Cites & Insights: unclear when

A brief non-status report on when the next issue of Cites & Insights might appear. I’d originally planned a slightly longer and perhaps more plaintive note, but circumstances argue for brevity.

The very short version: not dead, but there might not be an issue until Gold Open Access Journals 2012-2017 is complete, and that, in turn, might not be until June or maybe even July.

Why? Originally a combination of time pressures, lack of inspiration and some disappointment that my work on telling the truth about non-DOAJ OA journals and various lists has turned into a convenient checkmark for anti-OA articles, citing the earliest and least conclusive of several articles and essentially saying “There: We looked at the other side.” (According to Google Scholar, that 2014 piece has been cited 34 times–and not one of the other pieces has been cited at all.) (And let’s not even start on the fact that the fatally flawed but peer reviewed “420,000 predatory articles in 2014” nonsense continues to be The Accepted Story, with my carefully-done demonstration of the real numbers–about one-tenth to one-fourth as many, depending on assumptions–having no impact that I can determine, at least on the published literature.) But personal medical issues have added to that melange, making things even fuzzier.

The time pressure: GOAJ3, the new study, is turning out to take longer than expected (in the investigation phase) for at least three reasons:

  1. There are a lot of newly-added journals: 2,538 in all. Those take longer.
  2. Since there should be no journals with missing/hidden fee information, given DOAJ’s new requirements, I decided to check transparency along with verifying fee existence and amount: that is, to record whether it’s reasonably clear from a journal site whether there’s a fee and what it is, or whether you essentially need to rely on DOAJ. That’s going to be valuable information, I think, but it’s taking longer than expected.
  3. Life interferes with research, as it should, and that seems to be more the case this year. (Where 18 months ago I felt considerably younger than my chronological age, now I feel every day of 72.5 years..and this latest situation isn’t helping. Details unimportant, but old California hands might note that it relates to the initials/common name of one long-gone regional airline…)

I originally thought I’d be well enough along to pause the study in mid-February and do a short March issue (indeed, one essay’s ready and another’s half-done). That wasn’t true–and I found that I’d rather slog away at the journals thann write an issue. The next opportunity would be late March/early April, cross fingers, after completing the first pass and waiting at least two weeks before starting the second pass. That might still happen, but it might not

I know this may not be helpful. Sorry about that. Meanwhile, back to the hundreds of Universidad… journals.

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