Open access?

Stevan Harnad harnad at ECS.SOTON.AC.UK
Wed Apr 11 11:22:27 EDT 2012

Simple solution: All authors (Elsevier authors included) should 
self-archive the final, refereed, accepted draft of their articles
in their institutional repositories, and Google Scholar can index 
them there.

And their funders and institutions should mandate that they
do so.

That's all it will take: It's just been taking a lot of sluggish academic
neurons a ludicrously long time to come to realize it...

Stevan Harnad

On 2012-04-11, at 10:59 AM, Stephen J. Bensman wrote:

> Adminstrative info for SIGMETRICS (for example unsubscribe):
> Quentin,
> Thank you for the Guardian articles on Elsevier.  I would like to add 
> some observations of my own on this matter.  Elsevier runs a good 
> operation and publishes important materials.  I work with their support 
> people and find them informative and helpful.  But Elsevier has always 
> been non-cooperative, tries to force people to operate within its 
> system, and monopolizes its materials to maximize its profit.  This is 
> the nature of the beast.
> This tendency has recently had extremely negative consequences.  
> Since November, 2004, the field of scientometric evaluative data has 
> been been in a state of revolution.  In that month Elsevier launched 
> Scopus, and Google launched Google Scholar, breaking the monopolistic 
> hold Thompson Reuters ISI had on evaluative scientometric data.  Since 
> then there has been a Hobbesian battle among these three titans, 
> because--if I am correct--production and control of such data is very 
> profitable.  Such data is particularly needed in Europe and other places, 
> where science and universities are funded by the central governments, 
> which need such data for allocation decisions.  Thompson Reuters ISI 
> (The Empire) has struck back by abandoning its long-standing policy of 
> relying on mainly journals and launching its Book Citation Index.
> Google Scholar was really too difficult to use for evaluative purposes, 
> but this has changed with the launching of the Publish or Perish 
> program by Anne-Wil Harzing.  This program can be retrieved for free 
> from her Web site at  It is revolutionary in 
> that it establishes effective statistical and bibliographic control over 
> Google Scholar, making it feasible to use it for evaluative purposes.  I 
> am doing research with others to test the vaiidity of using Google 
> Scholar for evaluative purposes, using data which Anne-Wil has 
> graciously given me with her program.  It is the most stupendous and 
> interesting data set I have ever worked with.  However, in doing this 
> research, I came across this statement on Elsevier's SciVerse Web site 
> at the following URL:
> If one knows anything how Web seach engines operate, it is quite 
> obvious that this is a knife aimed by Elsevier at Google's jugular, 
> blocking it from indexing the publications of one of the leading 
> publishers of scientific materials.  Since I working with chemistry, I am 
> going to have to check what effect this has on Google Scholar.  
> Fortunately Anne-Wil's data allows me to determine from where Google 
> Scholar is retrieving its data.  The only question I have is whether this 
> is an advantageous or self-destructive move on the part of Elsevier, 
> whose publications and authors will be rated lower by Google Scholar, 
> which can be utilized without cost by cash-strapped institutions.
> Respectfully,
> Stephen J. Bensman, Ph.D.
> LSU Libraries 
> Louisiana State University
> Baton Rouge, LA 70803
> USA 
> On Tue, 10 Apr 2012 20:29:03 +0100, Quentin Burrell 
> <quentinburrell at MANX.NET> wrote:
>> Adminstrative info for SIGMETRICS (for example unsubscribe):
>> Members might be interested in these two related articles in today's 
> Guardian newspaper.
> academic-spring
> boycott-scientific-journals
>> Quentin Burrell

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