“Assigning Creative Commons Licenses to Research Metadata: Issues and Cases”, 19th September 2016…
“From a recent analysis, out of a sample of around 2500 publication repository services in OpenDOAR 2 ([those] supporting the OAI-PMH protocol standard), only 9 expose metadata license information: 3 with CC-0, 2 with CC-BY, and 4 which require a permission for commercial use, 3 with CC-0 and 1 with CC-BY.”
Nine. Not nine percent, just… nine. And one can assume that the other 1,100 repositories in OpenDOAR are even less likely to host CC license information for metadata in some form or other.
“Google Scholar is Filled with Junk”… and now, what-claims-to-be porn, even. The aptly-named iPensatori investigates.
I’d noticed this problem starting to creep in as long ago as 2014, by another route, even before Scholar began to be being targeted by SEO spivs. When searches for ‘Lovecraft’ (seeking new scholarship on the 20th century’s greatest horror/sci-fi writer) on Google Scholar started bringing up ebooks of explicit sex-stories listed on Google Books, as well as other more dubious sources. Here’s my screenshot of a Google Books entry in Google Scholar, from 2014…
Many more occurrences since then, too.
My quick tickle of ‘naked’ ‘celebrities’ in JURN suggests there’s no such content to be found via JURN.
Over the last month or so Retraction Watch’s Weekend Reads has become a must-read weekly newsletter. Not just the usual slate of links to stonkingly huge retractions but also tales of academic embezzlement, an article in The Economist on the systemic problems in Chinese science and academic publishing, ghost-management of the entire process of bringing a drug to market, news of quiet Elsevier acquisitions, and how Northwestern Polytechnic University in Silicon Valley became a corrupt test-faking visa-factory. That’s just a small sample from this week’s edition. There’s also optimism-inducing stuff, like this week’s news of Google’s new ‘Science Journal’ phone app which turns your phone into a citizen-science research lab.
Another observation on Facebook’s Group search. Searching a Group’s archives for “winning” shows all posts with “won’t” in them, seemingly on the principle that “won’t” contains “won” in it.
More vaccine-conspiracy nuttiness has been published by the OMICS Publishing Group, aka OMICS International. Galalae, K. (2016) “Turning Nature against Man: The Role of Pandemics, Vaccines and Genetics in the UN’s Plan to Halt Population Growth. Epidemiology, 2016 6:232. The article claims a total global eugenics conspiracy by the U.N….
“All epidemics and pandemics of the past 30 years are fabrications of the UN system and its partners in crime at the national level for the purpose of lowering births below the magic line of replacement level fertility and, more recently, also for limiting life to an economically acceptable and environmentally sustainable age.”
The last such article got pulled by OMICS after a while (I hear the whining about such things, regrettably, because I take a daily glance at the raw feed for “open access” via Twitter Live) so I guess this article may also be pulled soon. Although it seems to have been up for a month now, judging by the dates on the PDF.
There are no OMICS journals indexed in either the DOAJ or JURN, though it appears that their journals are indexed in JournalTOCs and Google Scholar in substantial numbers, and “Turning Nature against Man” is currently discoverable via Google Scholar.
SHERPA REF Beta is an open access compliance checking tool.
It seems that some universities are in for a rude awakening as they prepare for the next REF. According to the Wellcome Trust, 54% of Wiley’s hybrid OA articles published in 2014-15… “are non-compliant with terms of grant funding”. Across all publishers, 30% that Wellcome paid to be OA were not made OA in a REF-valid manner.
A quick check of the front-page statement “Our corpus currently includes only computer science papers” on Paul Allen’s Semantic Scholar shows that it’s no longer quite true. “Our corpus is mostly computer science papers and… a whole lot of other stuff that the A.I. dragged in” might be a more apt statement.
Semantic Scholar is definitely now ranging more widely in science, looking for fulltext PDFs. I’d guess that its A.I. is working outward from highly-cited papers and ferreting among their citations to try to dig up the fulltext for each. That would explain what appears to be the eclectic nature of Semantic Scholar’s spread away from computer science. On searches for ecology and other not-computer-sci stuff I very easily found a Powerpoint in PDF, a workshop presentation, even a saved print-to-PDF of a book reviews page in Science…
… as well as PDF papers from MDPI and ResearchGate, plus really obscurely self-archived and departmental archived PDFs. That kind of scattergun approach and lack of judicious curation seems to me to be the sign of a self-learning baby A.I. in action.
A quick note on the increasing tendency to wrongly use “Master’s degree”, instead of “Masters degree”, when referring to the Masters degree (the degree of the masters, not the degree of a master). Tonight I spotted “Master’s” occurring throughout the government consultation document on UK postgraduate loans. Open access to old books makes past usage into a sound and easily consulted guide, for those disinclined to open a dictionary. 60 seconds with Google Books, for instance, shows…
” … as in the case of a Masters degree” (Oxford University Calendar, 1850).
“the Masters degree to begin …” (The American Journal of Education, 1873).
A Study of All Masters Degree Graduates of The New York School of Social Work (1954).
Standards for Professional Masters Degree Programs (National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration, 1988).
The Masters Degree by Coursework (Australian Government Public Service, 1995).
Distance Education and the Masters Degree in Canada (University of Alberta, 1998).
One can also refer to a collection of “Masters’ theses” in America, it seems, though here in the UK I’ve only ever known of “Masters’ dissertations”.
The UMass Boston Bookshelf. A set of repository records for their books, as an integral part the main scholarworks.umb.edu repository at the University of Massachusetts Boston. No free PDFs there, but erm… commercial links to Amazon labelled “Buy this Submission”. Is the university that desperate for money, that they need to turn their supposedly open repository into a bookshop?
The EU’s “right to be forgotten” ruling is now blocking access to historical Holocaust archives, reports the Jerusalem Post…
Researchers across the continent – especially in Sweden, France and Germany – have claimed that archivists have begun restricting access to data, citing the GDPR as their rationale for not complying with requests for documents. Because the legislation does not stipulate how long after a person’s death his or her private information can be revealed, or when access to such information can be granted, some archivists “have begun reading into what they understand the law will be,” and are “barring access to materials, including materials [related to] the history of the Holocaust,” Dr. Robert Williams said.”
CHORUS Search doesn’t seem to be off to a great start. I made ten random attempts to get to National Science Foundation recently-funded (2014 and 2015) articles via it, and hit $35+ paywalls on seven of them.
It appears that the NewJour journal listings service (NEWJOUR‐L) has died suddenly and totally vanished. On all Web pages I get a message that it…
“is no longer available on this server and there is no forwarding address. Please remove all references to this resource.”
Ooops. Not content with having its Acrobat PDF reader be an ongoing and huge security risk, it seems Adobe now actively spies on its ebook readers: “Adobe sends your reading logs back to Adobe — in plain text”…
Adobe’s Digital Editions e-book and PDF reader — an application used by thousands of libraries to give patrons access to electronic lending libraries — actively logs and reports every document readers add to their local “library” along with what users do with those files. Even worse, the logs are transmitted over the Internet in the clear, allowing anyone who can monitor network traffic … to follow along over readers’ shoulders.
“the [study of the] presence and visibility of [a total of 137] Latin American repositories in Google and Google Scholar […] indicate[s] that the indexing ratio is low in Google, and virtually nonexistent in Google Scholar [with] a complete lack of correspondence between the repository records and the data produced by these two search tools.”
JURN is doing much better, in that regard, with a little help from Red Federada des Repositorios (which is comprehensively indexed by the main Google) and the general ‘open everything’ attitude to publishing scholarship in South America.
If your shiny new journal is to be published by a commercial megapublisher, it may not be prudent to lead off the first issue with a paper detailing…
“the large profits made by commercial publishers on the back of academics’ labours”
Why having the data can sometimes be handy: the Financial Times has fisked the Piketty data on Europe…
“The FT [Financial Times] found mistakes and unexplained entries in his spreadsheets, similar to those which last year undermined the work on public debt and growth of Carmen Reinhart and Kenneth Rogoff. … For example, once the FT cleaned up and simplified the data, the European numbers do not show any tendency towards rising wealth inequality after 1970. An independent specialist in measuring inequality shared the FT’s concerns.” – Financial Times.