Re: Full-Text Useage Statistics: Open Access vs. Firewalled

From: Declan Butler <dbutler_at_CYBERCABLE.FR>
Date: Thu, 17 Jan 2002 00:09:53 +0100

Dear all
On this topic; you may be interested to read a related piece "Free online
availability substantially increases a paper's impact"
by Steve Lawrence
NEC Research Institute, 4 Independence Way, Princeton, NJ 08540
Also see some stats (it's Figure 1) from Highwire Press for Oxford
University Press journals on the effects of free access

-----Message d'origine-----
De : September 1998 American Scientist Forum
Envoyé : mercredi 16 janvier 2002 22:52
Objet : Re: Full-Text Useage Statistics: Open Access vs. Firewalled

I do not think you have enough data yet for your titles. You are
comparing onw group of articles in an open environment with different
articles in a closed environment.
Stevan is correct that for the same articles, the open environment is
much more used, at least for ArXiv. This is compatible with recently
collected preliminary data from this university which shows very low
print and quite low electronic use from the journals whose articles are
in fields covered by arXiv, even though that area of coverage is a major
research subject here.

I can think of many sources from which relevantdata could potentially be
gathered. E.G., access for Highwire titles the month before and the
month after the access is open to the public.

What Biomednet needs to prove to me is that its articles are of
first-rate quality. I do not care much about use of lesser material,
from any source, paid or unpaid, just because it's there. I care about
use of excellent material, which is what the scientists really need.
It's excellence in scientific quality that matters most--only then comes
ease of availability to it.
If you prove able to arrange for both, you will have solved the problem.
-- Best wishes, David

Stevan Harnad wrote:
> 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
> > 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
> > downloads. On top of that there are a lot of 'abstract-visits' (a
> > of that number). From a recent Elsevier presentation (at e-ICOLC) I have
> > 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
> > 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
> > 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.
> and
> 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

David Goodman
Research Librarian
and Biological Science Bibliographer
Princeton University Library
Princeton, NJ 08544-0001
phone: 609-258-3235
fax: 609-258-2627
Received on Thu Jan 17 2002 - 03:59:49 GMT

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