Archive for October, 2022

GOA8: Two questions that need feedback

Wednesday, October 12th, 2022

Unlike the longer-term question of whether I should do the country book, these two questions need to be resolved before I start datagathering (on or about January 1), as they’re about gathering data. As always, you can comment here (for two weeks), or send email to, or reply to the tweets I’ll do on @goajwcc.

1. Should I rely on DOAJ for fee data in almost all cases?

That is: rather than going first to a journal’s website, looking around to see what it says about charges, and going to the DOAJ info only if I can’t figure things out directly, should I do it the other way around: Start with DOAJ, and unless the journal has had fee complications in the past (e.g., requiring membership. charging a variable fee, charging for submission or charging for both submission and processing), use the DOAJ data?

For GOA7, I wound up using 470 fees from DOAJ because I couldn’t determine the fee otherwise, and there were about 570 special cases. In those 570-odd cases, I would of course continue to base fees on the website itself.

I’ve seen very few cases where the DOAJ information contradicts what’s on the journal’s website, and relatively few journals seem to add complexity to their fees. If I make this change–which would save a fair amount of time–I’d guess a couple of dozen journals would wind up with slightly less accurate fee information (but that info would necessarily be more consistent with DOAJ). Since most complex cases are also relatively small journals with relatively low fees, I can’t imagine that discrepancies would change overall figures much.

I’m inclined to make this change, but I’m certainly open to your thoughts.

2. Should I look at DOAJ first for article counts?

As things stand, I look at a journal’s website first to do article counts–but if it’s not easy to determine the counts, I go to DOAJ and use that count if there is one and if it seems reasonable.

If I switched that, then for the journals that report metadata to DOAJ at the article level–by no means all of them. (DOAJ no longer reports that count on the homepage: my best guess is that about two-thirds of journals report at the article level.)

I would only use the DOAJ article count for a journal if it seemed to make sense–usually only for journals that have been around at least since 2021, where I can compare the DOAJ count with the GOA7 count. If in doubt, I’d try to count the articles directly.

This could save a lot of time (and as DOAJ grows and I get older and slower, time becomes more of an issue). I’m not sure whether it would decrease the accuracy of the figures–and, again, the figures would necessarily be closer to those in DOAJ.

[When nearly all DOAJ-listed journals provide article-level metadata and simple pricing, I’ll stop doing the GOA series, probably, if it doesn’t stop before then.]

Again, I’m inclined to make this change, but definitely open to persuasion.

GOA7: October 10, 2022 stats and a question

Monday, October 10th, 2022
As of October 10, 2022, as far as I can tell:


  • Overall report: 736 PDF copies (no books)
  • Countries: 90 PDF copies (no books)
  • Dataset: 152 views, 28 downloads


  • Overall report: 2,453 PDF copies (no books other than my copy)
  • Countries: 318 PDF (no books)
  • Dataset: 719 views, 123 downloads
The last month has seen healthy use of GOA7 PDF (roughly tripling) and modest use of the country book and dataset–and, still, no print books/

Toward GOA8: Country book/PDF?

I’ve raised this question on the GOAJ Twitter account (@GoajWcc), which is what you should be following for more frequent GOA updates and questions: Should I keep doing the Country book (which would once again  focus on the “long tail,” omitting the big publishers/groups)? It’s a few weeks work for me, and I find it interesting and worthwhile–but the very low usage (and zero book sales) make me wonder whether it’s worth the trouble. (It’s an optional part of the SPARC contract.) Please respond, here or on Twitter or at I don’t really need to decide until data gathering is done (prob. late spring 2023), but I should decide. And, of course, if there is no feedback, that is in itself a form of feedback/ All data and books have links at