Talk:List of open-access journals

Active discussions

Purpose and content of this pageEdit

There have been some recent drastic changes to this page that have been reverted, and need further discussion:

The fundamental problem is that a List of OA journals is now meaningless, as most journals in the sciences offers some version of what they call open access, though usually a very weak one. Therefore it is necessary to divide them into types, and that what an editor well aware of the problems involved did in January. Unfortunately the problems have now gotten considerably more complicated, because there is no longer any real agreement among open access advocates what the qualification for the term may be, and the leaders in the fields use very different definitions (for one thing, many OA journals are not CC-BY or CC-BY-SA, but put various limits on data mining and commercial reuse; some think anything less than CC-BY unacceptable; others think it a useful but unnecessary addition that should not complicate the movement to OA.)
As another problem, the recent successful OA initiatives in the US, UK, and elsewhere, are in the process of making all science and social science journals at least partially open access in some sense for the articles representing work paid for by most UK and US government funding---though the required OA is in some cases very weak indeed, being merely the right to make the author's accepted manuscript publicly accessible after 6 months--what is known as delayed green open access. Everything is in the course of very rapid evolution, and it is very difficult to keep up at this point.
That the list was incomplete, being limited to a few journals with no defined criteria, is also correct. This had a point once, when the major journals with OA were very few. So we really do need to extend to all of those which WP covers,and even if we were do do this with a category it would require multiple categories. The publishers' statements, which is what the pages of the journals rely on, are not reliable for this, because of the different types. Each individual one requires careful and skeptical analysis by someone expert in the distinctions and the wording, and would require re-analysis every few months. I could probably do it if I worked at nothing else and had one or two full-time assistants; and even so at least some of my OA friends would challenge whatever distinctions I were making.
So the version by types is necessary to be meaningful, and a great expansion is also needed, which may be beyond our abilities. This needs discussion. I have notified the academic journals task force. I think discussion should continue in a centralized manner. DGG ( talk ) 15:34, 3 April 2013 (UTC)
The talk page didn't get moved back when the main page did, but it has some relevant discussion: Talk:Comparison of open-access journals. Kxra and I were reworking it mainly to explore how a useful format for the list might be created; the next step would be to figure out a way to generate a more complete list in a semi-automated fashion, as there are far too many journals now to maintain this list manually. A good alternative might be breaking it up by subject area.--ragesoss (talk) 15:47, 3 April 2013 (UTC)
What are the options for presenting this page? Previously there were tables, as here and now there are not. Is the issue to determine whether there should be a checkbox table or just a list without trying to classify characteristics? Who has proposals for how this page should be? Blue Rasberry (talk) 16:11, 3 April 2013 (UTC)
Well, the two fundamental questions for me are, (1) what purpose would this article serve, and (2) what are the specific criteria for a tile to be included in the article. As to (1), what specifically would the reader learn from the list? What additional information would this offer that cannot be got from other articles? As to (2), are we talking about circulation? length of publishing? name of the publishing house? impact factor? It is clear that we do not want to duplicate Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) here as this would be a wasted time and effort.
I had no answer to these questions, nor there seemed to be any substantial discussion going on the Talk page. It rather focused on comparing the licences used by various OA publishers, and not the journals themselves. "Comparison of open-access licences" would be more appropriate? And because the article, which despite 7 years of existence contained only 40 (sic!) titles of unclear importance, became a frequent target of spammers, I proposed its deletion (and it got support of another well-established editor).
I suggest that if the article is to be kept, it has to be based on clear criteria (for example, listing all OA journals with an impact factor higher than 10.0). But primarily, in view of the existence of DOAJ, I am unsure this article is at all useful. kashmiri 16:20, 3 April 2013 (UTC)
  1. Basic factor. The purpose of WP is to give information for the general reader. This includes those people who want to find out about the topic in general, and also those people who reading WP or otherwise see a reference to a journal article and want to know if it is available to them on open access. It does not include scientists who wish to select a journal to publish it; they will always need to consult the journal site itself, or other specialized resources.
  2. Criteria of importance. The importance of a journal using a numerical measure cannot be calculated globally across fields--Very few fields have any journals with IFs above 10, OA or otherwise. The highest ranking journal in chemistry, for example, is Journal of the American Chemical Society , with an IF of 9.9. The normal distribution by fields used in analysis is the list of fields in Journal Citation Reports. It would be practical to use either the highest OA journals in each, or the highest in each that were also OA. But again, the number of OA journals is very different in different subjects. Where to mak ethe cutoff is a matter of preference--I'd keep it broad, limited mainly bywhat someone is prepared to work with enough to keep accurate.
  3. The definition of an OA journal. This is disputable. Most people consider an OA journal to be what is known as "Gold" Open Access, where either publication is done at the cost of the author or granting agency like PLOS, or is subsidized in some manner and done at no cost to anyone--for the record, although there are many such totally free journals, I think there are none of any general importance. A great many journals, including most commercial for-profit journals, permit open access for those selected articles for which the author or his grantor is prepared to pay, and are thus technically OA journals; I do not think they belong on this list, because the reader will not know in advance whether or not they will find the article they are looking for available. But there are also those who consider that any journal that permits self-archiving is an OA journal. As mentioned, this now includes or is about to include almost every significant journal, at least for selected articles, so that is not helpful either. Another difficult question is those journals like PNAS proving open access after a period of months (so-called delayed open access). The original definition of open access excluded these. But for the reader of WP, where articles are more often based on what has long been generally accepted in the field, knowledge of such material is very useful.
  4. Organization. As mentioned, this can be divided up either by type of access and then by subject (or alphabetically) or by subject (or alphabetically), and then specifying type of access. It can be done with a sortable table, but such tables are I think a poor compromise, especially because they are not accessible to screen reader devices. I know they're accepted here, but since we have unlimited space, I think we'd do better having separate tables for each method. My view is I think a minority.
  5. I don't know if it is worth the trouble. Personally, I'd rather work on more complete and accurate information in the articles in the individual journals. But in practice, one way of getting it might be to work on this list. DGG ( talk ) 00:13, 7 April 2013 (UTC)

History mergeEdit

I just requested a history merge for Talk:Comparison of open-access journals. I think this is not quite possible because of edits on both pages. Better to delete this one and move the other here. I already moved discussion from here to there. Blue Rasberry (talk) 16:14, 3 April 2013 (UTC)

This was resolved instead by putting the past discussion in an archive. Blue Rasberry (talk) 15:00, 4 April 2013 (UTC)

Would this link be useful?Edit

This one?

Jeff5102 (talk) 09:07, 18 July 2014 (UTC)

thanks. I'll put it under "Other". Regards,Jeff5102 (talk) 12:42, 22 July 2014 (UTC)

Using query for listsEdit


This is a list. And it's always an exhausting job that to create and update them. Couldn't this be done by a sql query ?

I think a lot of lists would gain making this transition.

If you want to read more about it I suggest you the PhD thesis of Christopher DAVIS. — Preceding unsigned comment added by RP87 (talk

contribs) 21:36, 19 February 2015 (UTC) --RP87 (talk) 21:39, 19 February 2015 (UTC)

Big picture? Inclusion criteria?Edit

I was just about to add some titles from Category:Open access journals when I took a closer look at the lead and an html comment therein.

The first thing I found strange was "at least some free content", because it seems more often than not a journal has some free content.

The second thing, in the comment is "all titles younger than 10 years will likely be SWIFTLY DELETED. This list is only for PARTICULARLY NOTABLE journals, which nearly always means a LONG PUBLICATION HISTORY." That seems like an awfully arbitrary and subjective criteria, and I don't see any substantive discussion on the matter on the talk page or the archive. Wouldn't it make more sense to just ditch the "at least some free content" as a limiting mechanism, say that all journal content must be freely available on the Internet and accompanied by an open license? And/or an impact factor requirement, perhaps?

I see DGG, Bluerasberry, and Kashmiri talking ab out some potential issues in a thread from 2013 -- was there a resolution along these lines that I'm missing? I get the sense that all of you are more familiar with the complexities of open access than I am, so maybe I'm oversimplifying. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 15:56, 12 February 2016 (UTC)

Rhododendrites About publication history - this was excellent advice a few years ago. Things change quickly. There still is the requirement of passing GNG or having some publication history. I still like the idea of arbitrarily defining an expected length. 10 years is to much to expect. 5 years? 3? I am not sure. Maybe just require "publication history" and not define it? Maybe say 10 or proof of significance, then accept any argument for significance? That last one is probably the status quo.
About "at least some free content" - I am not sure how this has been evaluated in the category. Industry has co-opted the term "open access" to mean "free to read, perhaps under limited circumstances". Nature, for example, allows subscribers to share articles with nonsubscribers, and they call that an open access program even though many people would not even call that "free to read". The open access movement has confirmed many times among its organizers that the term should be reserved for something like CC-By, but many powerful journals have continually published counter-propaganda saying that the open access movement wants CC-By-NC-ND, which was never the case and contrary to most of the aims. At this point, anything might go into "list of open access journals", or that could be made a category for categories with further differentiation into "journals by copyright license". Sources which seem reliable often give little information about whether a journal is open access, because the definition of the term "open access" is a battleground. Blue Rasberry (talk) 16:07, 12 February 2016 (UTC)
Bluerasberry has it right. When I came here 8 years ago, open access science journal were quite rare, and we were trying to include everything possible under the umbrella. (Most of the open access advocates were doing the same thing, for wea were all ofus very eager to get the principle accepted) Now, because of the success of various initiatives, every journal that publishes articles supported by US NIH and a number of other agencies both there and in various countries has some open access content, at least for articles older than six months or a year, and in that sense could be called a "partial delayed open access journal". Every journal from the large commercial publishers and many societies offers the authors the opportunity to have immediate open access, for usually a few thousand dollars in the case of the major journals. They are thus all in a sense therefore Hybrid open access journals. (They existed 8 years ago, but there were a minuscule number of applicable articles. There are more now, because it meets the requirements of many governments) Some journals, such ad Nature, have other arrangements. None of the above make a open access journal. They are all essentially publisher's devices to make some additional money or for the publisher to accept a compromise in order to delay the availability of true open access. An open access journal is one where all the articles are open access--a journal that when you go to it, you can read it without charge to the reader. A journal like PNAS all of whose content becomes available after 6 months, could fairly be called a "delayed open access journal". If included it should be marked as such.
CC-BY became an issue with the advent of data mining. Ideally, most think that a journal should be CC-BY; however but CC-BY-ND is accepted by some of the most vocal open access advocates--in some fields, the journals and often the scientists insist on prohibiting data mining without permission. . BY-NC is rarer, and I personally do not accept it within the definition, but I many good people do. DGG ( talk ) 17:26, 12 February 2016 (UTC)
This is helpful context, but I'm left wondering why it seems like publication history is the only factor for the purpose of this list? Why not limit it to full open access and specify the license. I see there were some tables to do that a while back which look to have been removed by Randykitty. Were they untenable or based on information too difficult to determine? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 04:42, 13 February 2016 (UTC)
I was going to getto that. I think that's obsolete also. It just means that very few journals are notable immediately, though of course there are exceptions, or even journals with good RSs before they actually are published, like PLone. The criterion should be that it's a full OA journal, not delayed or partial and that its notable in the sense of having a WP article. DGG ( talk ) 09:37, 13 February 2016 (UTC)
Sounds good to me. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 13:56, 13 February 2016 (UTC)
I just took a stab at rewording the lead accordingly:
Leading HTML comment: "NOTE: If you intend to add a new title below, please be aware all titles which do not have a Wikipedia article or do not offer full open access will be removed."

This is a list of open-access journals by field. The list contains notable journals which have a policy of full open access. It does not include delayed open access journals, hybrid open access journals, or related collections or indexing services.

Rhododendrites talk \\ 12:57, 16 February 2016 (UTC)
Based on this, I started checking the journals and adding refs to their open access/copyright policies. I also added CC icons where they used CC. Not sure if that's silly here. Only did a few to avoid wasting time pending feedback :) — Rhododendrites talk \\ 13:32, 16 February 2016 (UTC)
Thoughts on this? CC icons a waste/eyesore? — Rhododendrites talk \\ 15:51, 2 March 2016 (UTC)
Looks like Randykitty removed them as "unexplained clutter". Can't say I object to the removal, though. It seems nobody liked the idea enough to say so or run with it, so it slipped off my radar and wound up looking silly. Ah well. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 21:03, 17 June 2016 (UTC)
Maybe it would be better to convert to a table/s to include the extra information in a column. The List of Cambridge University Press journals article does a similar thing. Jonpatterns (talk) 08:00, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
Edit - I see this has already been suggested. I would support. Jonpatterns (talk) 08:04, 18 June 2016 (UTC)

Would it be useful to also define the inclusion criteria in the lede? Otherwise it may end up confusing people who've otherwise seen DOAJ or even Elsevier's list or equivalent lists and don't understand the notability inclusion difference. T.Shafee(Evo&Evo)talk 11:27, 25 January 2020 (UTC)

Maintenance, duplication and spam problemsEdit

  • These lists are very difficult to maintain (and I'm not really sure that we should even try to duplicate DOAJ). Once their creator tires of them or retires, they rapidly become outdated and attract spam for non-notable journals or even predatory ones. Some of these journal lists also contain huge amounts of "references", which all are external links to the journals' homepages (predatory publishers absolutely love that, a link to their website from WP!) I just outlined some of the problems with Comparison of statistics journals. Jonpatterns Johnuniq removed my db-spam tag on the List of Cambridge University Press journals, saying that it is not promotional. I'm not so sure about that. I am actually quite sure that if somebody tried to create a List of Elsevier journals, it would be speedied as spam really fast (but then, we all love to hate Elsevier, isn't it?) A list like the one on the CUP journals duplicates the information on their own website and also our Category:Cambridge University Press academic journals (although the latter only contains those journals on which we have an article, of course). Not to mention the fact that the list seems to be outdated, too (cf this list - isn't this actually a copyvio?) Personally I think that the time and energy expended on these lists would be better used to expand our coverage of notable journals: I estimate that there are still thousands of notable journals waiting for an article (we have less than 10,000 journal articles and Scopus covers more than 22,000). But I'm probably wasting my breath, as people seem to love these list articles... Thanks for listening to my frustrated rant. --Randykitty (talk) 09:26, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
@Randykitty: I didn't remove the db-spam tag from List of Cambridge University Press journals, I replaced speedy delete with merge on List of open access nonprofit journals. Does a journal being on Scopus automatically make is notable? Jonpatterns (talk) 10:04, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
Oops, sorry, that was a different John :-) I've corrected that above (and pinged the other John). And, yes, at this point, we accept Scopus as sufficiently selective that inclusion in it is taken as evidence of notability (pinging DGG, who may also be interested in this discussion). --Randykitty (talk) 10:11, 18 June 2016 (UTC)
I've found that there is a List of Elsevier periodicals from the list list article Lists of academic journals. I think it could be useful to create a category 'Scopus indexed journals', this can be readily verified from the information on Scopus website.Jonpatterns (talk) 00:06, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
I'll be darned. I was looking for "List of Elsevier academic journals" (I'll create a redirect in a minute), so I missed that one. Not sure about a Scopus category. Many journals are indexed in many databases, several of them selective in the sense of NJournals. I'm not sure, therefore, that inclusion in any one of them is a "defining" characteristic, as required for a category. --Randykitty (talk) 08:55, 20 June 2016 (UTC)
There appears only to be two over arching indexes Scopus, and Web of Science that covers many other databases. Inclusion in either generally means notability, therefore I would say that is a "defining" characteristic".
Regarding the lists, I think they could potentially be generated automatically. However, I need to research into how this could be implemented.Jonpatterns (talk) 11:06, 20 June 2016 (UTC)

WoS is not a database, but an access platform. What is important, are some of its constituent databases: mainly Science Citation Index (and SCI Expanded), Social Sciences Citation Index, and Arts and Humanities Citation Index. The Wos Indexes and Scopus are indeed the largest databases conferring notability (Scopus now having over 20,000 entries, that's going to be a fun category...). However, they are certainly not the only ones. MEDLINE (and its even more selective subset Index Medicus) and the ATLA Religion Database , to mention just two. Many journals are in multiple databases that confer notability. Take one of our GA articles, Genes, Brain and Behavior. It's in Biological Abstracts, BIOSIS Previews, Index Medicus, MEDLINE/PubMed, Science Citation Index Expanded, and Scopus (omitting some less important ones). Would you really like to argue that inclusion in any of these databases is "defining" for this journal? --Randykitty (talk) 18:22, 22 June 2016 (UTC)

Being indexed in Scopus appears to be a defining attribute, it confers notability and that it has passed the indexer's process. I'm not sure why you suggest the number of articles in a category, or the number of categories an article may come under is relevant. Are there any guidelines to help identify what can be classed as defining? Jonpatterns (talk) 10:32, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
I didn't say that the size of the category was relevant, I was just poking fun of it. Anyway, I don't think that it's the remit of WP to construct an index to Scopus and I maintain the indexing in some database is absolutely not defining. Take a biography of some person for example. This person might meet GNG because there are in-depth articles in the New York Times and Washington Post. Do you think that because these articles "confers notability", we should now create a category "persons with an article in the New York Times"? Of course not! Having that article is not defining, even though it confers notability. same thing here. I would appreciate if you would blank the category that you just created (so that it can be deleted as "author blanked"). But if you're not convinced, I'll take it to CfD. --Randykitty (talk) 11:43, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
I'm not sure. If there was no criteria for being indexed then it wouldn't be defining. As Scopus has strict rules its probably more like accreditation rather than coverage. Probably best to CfD to generate more discussion.Jonpatterns (talk) 12:19, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Actually, Scopus' rules are relatively lax, nothing like MEDLINE or the Science Citation Index. There has even been the occasional rumbling among participants at the journals Wikiproject to stop considering inclusion in Scopus as satisfying NJournals. For the moment, though, Scopus indexing does indeed confer notability. For journal publishers, though, the Holy Grail for a new journal is to be indexed in the SCIE or the SSCI, because that will give them the coveted impact factor. In the life sciences, PubMed is almost as important, because it is the most-used literature-search tool for most researchers and many authors will not submit to a journal that is not indexed there. Scopus, publishers and authors care much less about. Anyway, I have taken the cat to CfD, so let's continue the discussion there (I have provided a link there to this discussion). --Randykitty (talk) 15:59, 23 June 2016 (UTC)
Thanks for the additional information.Jonpatterns (talk) 16:03, 23 June 2016 (UTC)

Merge from List of open access nonprofit journalsEdit

The List of open access nonprofit journals could be incorporated into this list and indicated if it is also non-profit. It could be a column if the list was converted to a table, as discussed above. Jonpatterns (talk) 08:33, 18 June 2016 (UTC)

Yes it should be merged--there is already some duplication. DGG ( talk ) 03:54, 19 June 2016 (UTC)

Links to articles on other WikipediasEdit

Just a heads up that I've removed the articles which were included on the basis of articles on other Wikipedias. Other Wikipedias have different standards for notability, and guidelines are often not well enforced owing to the smaller user base. That may or may not be the case here, but a spot check shows most of these were based just on primary sources anyway. — Rhododendrites talk \\ 17:12, 15 April 2018 (UTC)

Move discussion in progressEdit

There is a move discussion in progress on Talk:List of open access projects which affects this page. Please participate on that page and not in this talk page section. Thank you. —RMCD bot 02:01, 3 June 2018 (UTC)

Move discussion in progressEdit

There is a move discussion in progress on Talk:List of open-access projects which affects this page. Please participate on that page and not in this talk page section. Thank you. —RMCD bot 13:46, 10 June 2018 (UTC)

Split into Gold OA and Diamond OA lists?Edit

This list currently combines both gold OA (e.g. PLOS One) and diamond OA (e.g. Acta Mathematica) without any indication of which is which. I think it would be helpful to split into two lists. Also, the current title is confusing since other flavors of OA are excluded (to be clear, I think other flavors should be excluded since there are so many OA journals these days, my issue is just with the title. Crust (talk) 15:01, 2 November 2019 (UTC)

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