Full-Text Useage Statistics: Open Access vs. Firewalled

From: Stevan Harnad <harnad_at_cogprints.soton.ac.uk>
Date: Wed, 16 Jan 2002 18:50:23 +0000

On Wed, 16 Jan 2002, Jan Velterop wrote:

> Dear fellow Open Accessors,
> May I put a question to you? Would any of you have an idea of access figures
> of full-text articles in Open Access environments vs. protected access
> environments?
> We have recently analysed the figures for BioMed Central and come to an
> average full-text access statistic per article per month of more than 100
> downloads. On top of that there are a lot of 'abstract-visits' (a multiple
> of that number). From a recent Elsevier presentation (at e-ICOLC) I have the
> following figures: ca. 10 million full-text downloads a month from
> ScienceDirect and 40 million abstract-visits (ScienceDirect currently
> contains 1.8 million articles), which translates to something in the order
> of 5.5 full-text downloads per article per month.
> I wonder if we have enough data to show unambiguously that Open Access
> increases an article's visibility by a really significant factor (almost 20
> on the basis of the figures above).

Data are accumulating, and it would be easy for someone to do a
systematic study, using archives such as the Physics Arxiv where
accesses to the firewalled vs. free draft of the same work can
be specifically compared.

Perhaps others will know of such systematic comparisons underway
currently. I know only of these two at the moment:

Lawrence, S. (2001) Online or Invisible? Nature 411 (6837): 521.


Odlyzko, A.M. (2002) The rapid evolution of scholarly communication, A.
M. Odlyzko. Learned Publishing, 15(1), pp. 7-19. Also to
appear in Bits and Bucks: Economics and Usage of Digital Collections,
W. Lougee and J. MacKie-Mason, eds., MIT Press, 2002.

Stevan Harnad
Received on Wed Jan 16 2002 - 18:53:07 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.0 : Fri Dec 10 2010 - 19:46:22 GMT