Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:8 (August 2014) available

Cites & Insights 14:8 (August 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i8.pdf The two-column print-oriented issue is 32 pages long. A single-column 6x9" version designed for online/tablet reading is also available, at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i8on.pdf (The single-column version is 61 pages long.) This issue includes the following:

The Front: Once More with [Big] Dealing pp. 1-2

If you read the June 2014 issue, you may be aware that "Big-Deal Serial Purchasing: Tracking the Damage" wasn't available when I thought it would be.

It's available now; this brief essay offers the link to the ALA Store page for the Library Technology Reports issue and notes the complementary book for those academic librarians with deeper interests.

I believe every academic library should pay attention to this issue of LTR. If your library subscribes, it should be available now (electronically) or in a few days (in print form). If it doesn't, you should buy the issue as a separate. Some of you really would find Beyond the Damage: Circulation, Coverage and Staffing useful as well.

Words: Doing It Yourself pp. 2-18

Notes on self-publishing and whether or not it makes sense for you (or for your library to assist with).

Intersections: Access and Ethics 3 pp. 18-32

A range of commentaries having to do with open access and ethics over the past 18 months or so--and a couple of brief followups on previous essays. (You may notice that one Very Large Journal Publisher doesn't show up much in this essay. Its time will come.)
What's not here: the list of C&I supporters and sponsors. I'll add the three names (yes, three) in a later issue.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:7 (July 2014) now available

Cites & Insights 14:7 (July 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i7.pdf That URL is for the traditional two-column print-oriented ejournal. If you plan to read the journal on a computer, a tablet or other e-device (and if you plan to follow links), you're much better off--especially in this case--downloading the single-column online-oriented version at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i7on.pdf [Links may not work from the two-column version. Conversely, some boldface may not show up in the one-column version. This issue has two dozen tables, some of which have smaller type in the two-column version, making the one-column version easier to read.] The two-column version is 24 pages long. The single-column 6x9 version is 45 pages long. The issue consists of a single essay, all original material (except for a few excerpts from publisher pages):

Intersections Journals, "Journals" and Wannabes: Investigating the List (pp. 1-24)

Jeffrey Beall's 4P (potential, probable, possible predatory) publisher and journal lists total 9,219 journals in early April 2014.

The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) totals 9.822 journals as of early June 2014. 9,219 is 93.9% of 9,822.

But: 90.8% of the journals in DOAJ are not represented in Beall's lists.

A paradox? Not really.

This special issue does something I don't believe has ever been done before (and is unlikely ever to be done again): looks at every journal from every publisher on Beall's lists to see whether they're plausible predators--whether they could reasonably attract any sensible author.

Yes, I even used a control group: members of the OASPA. And two subject groups from DOAJ as secondary control groups.

What's here? A discussion of my methodology (of course); the results; the control-group results; the subject-group results; some notes on "the name game" (anyone want to help start up International Journal of International Journals?); a few notes from some "publisher" sites; some comments on fee vs. free; discussing real and possible predators--and a list of potentially predatory characteristics of subscription journal publishers; a couple of other issues; and some conclusions, including a new and faster "Is this a reasonable journal?" methodology.
If you read C&I 14.4 or 14.5 (and thousands of you did), I believe you must read this issue, the product of months of research and analysis.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:6 (June 2014) available

Cites & Insights 14:6 (June 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i6.pdf

The print-oriented two-column version is 16 pages long.

You may also view or download a 32-page one-column 6x9" ereader-oriented version at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i6on.pdf

This issue includes three sections:

The Front: Beyond the Damage (pp. 1-4)

Libraries that subscribe to Library Technology Reports should, some time in the next few days or weeks, receive "Big-Deal Serial Purchasing: Tracking the Damage"--and academic libraries that don't subscribe to LTR may want to purchase this edition from ALA Editions. It brings last year's The Big Deal and the Damage Done forward to cover 2002-2012 and offers a tighter and more sophisticated view of the situation. (Spoiler alert: Things got worse from 2010 to 2012)

Simultaneously, I'm publishing Beyond the Damage: Circulation, Coverage and Staffing, a book looking at some other aspects of academic libraries and how they changed between 2002 and 2012. It's available in two forms, each $45: a 130-page paperback with color graphs--or a site-licensed PDF ebook with precisely the same content. Easiest way to find it: go to Lulu.com and search "Crawford beyond damage" (no quotes needed)--that currently yields just the two versions.

Media: Mystery Collection, part 7 (pp. 4-12)

For the first time, most of these movies are in color--which doesn't necessarily mean they're better, as this is also (I believe) the first time I've given up on movies before they're finished in five out of 24 cases. There are some gems, but also some real dross here.

The Back (pp. 12-16)

Little snarky essays on a variety of things, not all of them entirely humorous.

Next time...

As previously announced, the next issue (which might be the July issue, the July/August issue, or the Summer 2014 issue) should appear some time in June and will be a single- essay issue delving into the realities behind the Beall list--including not only original research but a control group!
After that...well, there's still time to become a supporter or sponsor of Cites & Insights.

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:5 (May 2014) now available

The May 2014 Cites & Insights (14:5) is now available for downloading.

You'll find it at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i5.pdf for the 34-page print-oriented two-column version

or at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i5on.pdf for the 65-page 6x9 online/tablet-oriented single-column version. The issue includes two essays:

Intersections: Ethics and Access 2: The So-Called Sting (pp. 1-20)

John Bohannon wrote a news article in Science that either shows that many open access journals with APC charges have sloppy (or no) peer review...or shows almost nothing at all. This story discusses the article itself, offers a number of responses to it--and then adds something I don't believe you'll find anywhere else: A journal-by-journal test of whether the journals involved would pass a naive three-minute sniff test as to whether they were plausible targets for article submissions without lots of additional checking. Is this really a problem involving a majority of hundreds of journals--or maybe one involving 27% (that is, 17) of 62 journals? Read the story; make up your own mind.

Libraries Future Libraries: A Roundup (pp. 21-34)

Pretty much what the title suggests--not a sequel to a nineteen-year-old book I coauthored, but a roundup of some thoughts from other folks.

A note on formatting

I believe I've solved the "emphasis added" problem--that bolded material within quoted passages should now actually appear bolded. In the process, I've also cut the download size (and presumably time) considerably, especially for the print-oriented issue. I've retroactively done the same for all 2014 issues; let me know if you see problems.

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Cites & INsights April 2014 available

The April 2014 issue of Cites & Insights (volume 14, issue 4, whole # 172) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i4.pdf

The print-oriented two-column edition is 22 pages.

Those reading online or on a tablet may prefer the 6x9" single-column version, which is 41 pages long, at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i4on.pdf

This issue includes two essays:

Intersections: Ethics and Access 1: The Sad Case of Jeffrey Beall (pp. 1-14)

The saga of Jeffrey Beall going from self-appointed investigator into "predatory" open access publishers and journals (and, notably, only OA journals) to ludicrous analyst of serials pricing and the reasons for OA--and beyond that to denouncing OA and its advocates? It's an odd story, and my version includes some really good ideas on avoiding sketchy journals (mostly from a notoriously worthwhile pseudonymous feathered library type) without buying into vigilantism.

The Middle: Forecasts and Futurism (pp. 14-22)

After skipping a year, it's time for another set of forecasts (short-term predictions) and futurism (long-term "predictions"), including some thoughts on the whole trendspotting game.
Does that number in the title of the first essay suggest something? Why, yes, it does--probably two things, one of them almost certain to appear in the May 2014 issue, and involving another "B."

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:3 (March 2014) available

Breaking the silence of project preparation to announce: Cites & Insights 14:3 (March 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i3.pdf

That's a 32-page two-column PDF optimized for printing. If you're planning to read it online or on an e-device, I suggest the 61-page single-column 6" x 9" PDF optimized for viewing (and much smaller as a download) at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i3on.pdf

The issue includes:

The Front: Toward 15 and 200: Your Help Wanted pp. 1-3

Cites & Insights is in its 14th year and has passed Issue 170. I'm asking for help to encourage keeping it up to at least 15 and 200--and offering perks for donors.

Media: Thinking about Magazines pp. 3-24

Think print magazines are disappearing--or, worse, are just miscellaneous collections of articles? Think again. If you want a sense of the continuing importance of print magazines, maybe four words will suffice: World Wildlife and STAND--the new glossy print magazines from, respectively, World Wildlife Fund and the ACLU, both of which recognize the special power of a good magazine. This roundup includes some numbers and some perspectives. (No, Cites & Insights isn't a magazine; it's closer to a newsletter. And while a few journals are also magazines--Science, for example--most journals aren't magazines and most magazines aren't journals.)

The Back pp. 25-32

A baker's dozen of minisnarks (or, if you prefer, a dozen with lagniappe) on sound, prices, TED, silliness and casual (or ignorant) tech-sexism at "the newspaper of record."

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Cites & Insights February 2014 (14:2) available

The February 2014 issue of Cites & Insights (volume 14, number 2) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i2.pdf. The two-column print-oriented (and optimized for printing) PDF is 42 pages long. If you're planning to read it on a tablet or online, you may prefer the 80-page 6" x 9" single-column version (not optimized for printing) at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i2on.pdf This issue completes the book-length discussion of ebook issues. It contains:

Perspective: E and P: What I Ignored pp. 1-2

Possible motivations behind some comments and stances on pbooks and ebooks

Intersections: It Seems Like the Obvious Case: Ebooks as Textbooks pp. 2-15

For more than a decade I've assumed that textbooks represented the obvious billion-dollar (well, multi-billion-dollar) market for ebooks. It turns out not to be that easy.

Libraries: Ebooks and Libraries pp. 15-42

This discussion leaves out way too much and probably grossly oversimplifies the situation, but I do discuss some items having to do with the philosophical and general issues, problems, publishers and vendors, Kindles and libraries, and Douglas County and friends.