Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Software to automate OA queries to authors

News from Ari Friedman's Self-Archiving Initiative:

There is now software available, written in PERL, to check journal policies in a long list of citations and e-mail the authors to ask them to provide archivable versions. If you have any problems adapting the code to your own purposes, please e-mail the author.

I wrote him for additional details and learned this:

It was designed to help create this page

Given a webpage of articles in that particular citation format (can be changed with some minor coding), it runs through a list of articles, looks their open access status up in ROMEO, then embeds comments next to each article with that status.  A separate script can then run through and e-mail all the authors whose works are not currently OA.  The text of the e-mail is customizable.  We used it to ask the author to send us a version which we were allowed to make publicly available on our page, but I imagine if it gets any use outside of its original use it will be to ask authors to self-archive the works and provide the link.

PS:  Unlike the email request buttons now available for EPrints and DSpace, Friedman's software applies to online bibliographies, not repositories, sends many queries at once, and can ask authors to deposit their articles, not merely to forward copies of articles already on deposit.  This could be very useful.