Open access?

Stephen J Bensman notsjb at LSU.EDU
Wed Apr 11 14:09:45 EDT 2012

I think that my exchange with Filipo may answer some of your questions.

Stephen J Bensman
LSU Libraries
Lousiana State University
Baton Rouge, LA 70803

-----Original Message-----
From: ASIS&T Special Interest Group on Metrics [mailto:SIGMETRICS at LISTSERV.UTK.EDU] On Behalf Of Pippa Smart
Sent: Wednesday, April 11, 2012 10:55 AM
Subject: Re: [SIGMETRICS] Open access?

Thank you for this important posting. On testing Google Scholar for some articles from the Lancet (=Elsevier), it seems to include these, so it is possible that Elsevier has granted Google permission to index them (with citation information) - unless the "cited by"only comes from non-Elsevier titles - I would be really interested to find out, so please do post your findings.

(And in my experience Google Scholar has always asked for permission to index scholarly content, including that behind subscription barriers with commercial publishers.) Pippa

Pippa Smart
Research Communication and Publishing Consultant PSP Consulting
3 Park Lane, Appleton, Oxon OX13 5JT, UK
Tel: +44 7775 627688 or +44 1865 864255
email: at
Editor of the ALPSP-Alert, Reviews editor of Learned Publishing

On 11 April 2012 15:59, Stephen J. Bensman <notsjb at> 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
> 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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