Re: Nature 10 September on Public Archiving

From: Stevan Harnad <>
Date: Sat, 19 Sep 1998 13:50:11 +0100

The exchanges with Albert Henderson have rapidly converged on that happy
asymptote where no further replies are required; the reader need merely
rewind the thread. An even simpler algorithm for deducing ah's view on
any of the issues under discussion is simply this: "All problems can
be solved by giving libraries more money to spend."

I close with some new citation data from Greg Youngen (with permission):

Date: Thu, 17 Sep 1998 11:57:54 -0500 (CDT)
From: Greg Youngen <>

ah> In spite of the buzz we hear constantly, the effect of ejournals to
ah> date in terms of citation studies has been minimal. (S.P. Harter. 1998.
ah> Scholarly Communication and Electronic Journals. JASIS: Journal of the
ah> American Society for Information Science. 49(6):507-516).

My research indicates that citations in the print literature to the xxx
e-prints have increased by nearly 100% each year since 1992. The
results of this study will be published in the Sept. 98 issue of College &
Research Libraries.

Contrast this to Harter's article, which only measured e-journals and
ignored the xxx eprints.

What's more, if you isolate the physics & astronomy literature and count
the number of citations to 1997 articles, over 6% of all the citations
are to xxx e-prints. Indications are this number will increase
in 1998 as well.

This tells me that the user base for electronic preprints is growing; that
authors are not waiting until an article is formally published before
citing; and that eprints must be maintained by someone because they have
become an intrinsic part of the literature.

Greg Youngen
Physics/Astronomy Librarian Phone: 217-244-2096
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Fax: 217-333-3207
Urbana, IL 61801
Received on Tue Aug 25 1998 - 19:17:43 BST

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