Archive for the ‘open access’ Category

Status notes on Gold OA 2024/Diamond OA 2024

Wednesday, September 20th, 2023

First off: Barring major health or other problems, there will be a Gold OA 2024/Diamond OA 2024 set of studies and accompanying spreadsheet.

Here are some notes on a preliminary pass cleaning up some metadata on most of the dataset:


  • In November, I’ll do a second subject/support/country scan for newly-added journals.
  • In mid-December, I’ll do a near-final cleanup and prepare the dataset.
  • January 1, I’ll do final data additions and should be able to start the scan shortly thereafter.
  • The schedule largely depends on personal and family health issues: This year was bad–half a day lost Monday-Friday for seven weeks, and general exhaustion a bit beyond that–but I was still able to finish data gathering in mid-May, do the Gold OA report on June 5, and do the Diamond OA report on June 21.
  • There will be significantly more journals this time around, and once again I’m aiming for “some time in the summer” for both reports–with the hope of dates comparable to this year.


Please follow the link already provided. I could use suggestions on how to cluster support/sponsorship categories for the Diamond OA report.


I’m old. (78, if you’re wondering.) Health issues are always possible. I’m expecting some PT this fall and possibly into next year. I don’t currently believe it will significantly impact the schedule.

And I enjoy doing this and regard it as worthwhile, so I’ll do the best I can.

And, of course, it would be lovely to see one or two print copies of each of the books sold (from which I make essentially no revenue–under $0.50)–but I won’t be holding my breath.

Toward Gold Open Access 2024/Diamond OA 2024: refreshing subjects and support

Wednesday, September 13th, 2023

I just completed the pass through DOAJ journals downloaded July 11, 2023 (19,564 of them) to recheck publisher category, refresh/refine subject assignments, and refresh/assign funding source codes for diamond OA journals from publishers other than societies and universities.

All of this is preliminary and subject to further change, of course, but this is a good start. As of today, there are roughly 300 more journals in DOAJ; in November or early December, I’ll do a similar pass of newly-added journals. Note that “no-fee” and “fee” are based on a single column in the DOAJ metadata; some “no-fee” journals have fees other than APCs  and will change to fee in the end. (Best guess: a few hundred.)

Here’s what I see as of now:

Subject changes

  • 3,262 subjects were changed.
  • 1,342 subjects for newly-added journals.
  • 14,960 checked and unchanged.

Publisher category

  • u [Universities, colleges, research centers]: 12,030, of which 9,817 are no-fee and 2,213 have fees.
  • o [Open/not otherwise categorized]: 3,186, of which 1,273 are no-fee and 1,913 have fees.
  • s [Societies, govt]: 2,536, of which 1,876 are no-fee and 660 have fees.
  • t [Traditional]: 1,804, of which 283 are no-fee and 1,521 have fees. Note that–although there are 1,342 newly-added journals–this is a much lower number than in GOA8, as I concluded that some publishers tagged as traditional were really almost entirely open (and quite a few “o” journals turned out to be university or society journals).
  • V [blocked by virus]: four.

Support category for the 1,556 no-fee open and traditional journals

  • u [University and academia]: 610
  • s [Society, govt]: 502 – thus, 1,112 of the 1,156 (71%) are funded from traditi0nal sources.
  • q [Questionable/unknown]: 225. Possible that later investigation can reduce this, which is mostly journals with no stated funding source.
  • c [Collective/consortium]: 106. Includes journals clearly volunteer-run with an apparent intenti0n to stay that way. (Also includes a few supported by multiple institutions, but most of these are in u or s
  • f [Foundation, charity or business]: 62.
  • z [Defunct]: 19 journals that have clearly ceased publishing.
  • i [Initial offer]: 17 journals where the no-fee statement suggests that there will be a fee in the future.
  • d [Donations solicited]: 8 journals that explicitly invite donations.
  • 3 [SCOAP3]: two.
  • x [subscribe-to-open]: two clear cases
  • V [Virus blocked]: two.
  • a [Advertising revenue]: one.

One issue to be resolved before Diamond OA 2024 is done: how to group all but u & s into two or three manageable clusters (or in some cases treat them as u or s).


I’m not sure a list of current subject assignments is useful, but given that there are quite a few more journals, it may be worth noting subjects that have fewer journals in the current list than in GOA8, usually because of refinements/reassignments (and in a few cases clear error).

In alphabetic order, these are biology, earth sciences, education, history, sociology, technology. For education and history, this is partly an explicit shift so that history *of* x or education *about* x is classified as X.


GOA8 and Diamond OA 2023: Through September 3

Monday, September 4th, 2023

Gold Open Access 8

  • PDF downloads: 189
  • Dataset:57 downloads.
  • Books: none.

Diamond OA 2023

  • PDF downloads: 138
  • Books: none

Gold Open Access 7

  • PDF downloads: 1,184
  • Print version: 1 copy
  • Dataset: 423 downloads [typo last month]
  • Country book: 249 downloads, no print


GOA[9] Refresh: The First 14,000

Saturday, August 26th, 2023

As noted in earlier posts, I’m doing an advance scan (or several) on DOAJ journals to try to clean up subject assignments and publisher category assignments, and to attempt to assign a support/funding source for diamond journals published by OA and toll publishers (rather than societies and universities).

I’ve now done the first two 7,000-journal chunks (another 5,564 left to go: then, in October or November, I’ll do a pass of journals added since early July). Here are some informal and not very meaningful results on the first 14,000 (not too meaningful because some of these no longer publish, a few will have or have already been dropped from DOAJ, and there’s always room for refinement). I did use the set of principles I’ve discussed to assign subjects (perhaps not always consistently). One point: for journals in Dergipark, the Turkish platform that seems to always use a person’s name as publisher, I’ve assumed that if that name is a university scholar and most/all of the editors are university folk, it’s a university journal. (Also: where DOAJ shows no fee on the master table but also shows “other” fees, the fee status may change.)

Subject changes

At this point, 1,014 are new journals; 2,810 subjects have been changed (I’d guess 5% errors, the rest refinements); 10,176 are unchanged.

Publisher categories

Note that quite a few “t” journals are now “o,” and a fair number of “o” journals are either “s” or “u” after visiting the websites.

University/college/research center (u): 7,130, of which 5,685 do not charge fees and 1,445 do.

Societies/associations/government (s): 2,491, of which 1,840 do not charge fees and 651 do.

Open access/independent publishers (0): 2,809, of which 1,061 do not charge fees and 1,793 do.

Traditional publishers (t): 1,563, of which 275 do not charge fees and 1,288 do.

Stopped by virus: seven.

Note that two essentially-all-OA offshoots of traditional publishers (KeAi and Sciendo) account for a lot of the changes.

Support/sponsor codes for 1,291 no-fee “o” and “t” journals

A problem here is that, ignoring the 21 that are already known defunct or where a virus stopped my checking, I have nine codes, far too many to use in tables within Diamond OA 2024. Suggestions on grouping these into a more workable number would be welcome:

  • u: Universities and research centers: 525 [obviously this will be one of the categories]
  • s: Societies and government: 375 [ditto]  –Note that these account for 900 of the 1,291.
  • q: Questionable/unknown: 190 — these may get further checks, but usually there’s not much I can do with a few minutes on websites; These are cases where the sponsoring agency just isn’t stated (or doesn’t exist).
  • c: Consortium/collective: 102 — cases where there’s a clear group of people or agencies volunteering time and resources to make the journal work.
  • f: Foundation, charity or business: 52.
  • z: No sponsorship details but has clearly ceased publishing: 19
  • i: Initial offer: 15. These the “waived through X date” cases.
  • d: Donations invited: 8. These seem to be more dependent on readers sending in money.
  • 3: SCOAP3: 2. (There may be others, but these two are flagged as such.)
  • V: virus prevented analysis: 2
  • x: Subscribe-to-open: 1. I’m SURE there are others but only one clear case. Along with “i” and some portion of “q,” these are the tough one.

So there it is. Thoughts? Suggestions for clumping all those codes? What to do with “q”–and no, sending letters or emails to publishers is not going to happen. Right now, I’m inclined to think of consortia and collectives as informal societies; doing that leaves a very small residue other than “q.”

Now, back to the other 5,564. [I’m not spending a huge amount of time on this: typically 300 journals a day, which can take a couple of hours or a lot less.]

[Added a bit later: If you’re wondering about the remaining 5,564: as always, I sort by publisher and journal–and I’m in the “U”s. Best guess: 4,500 or more of the remaining 5,564 are university journals.

Toward GOA9/Diamond OA 2024

Sunday, August 13th, 2023
  1. A few otes along the way:
  • There’s been just enough interest in Diamond Open Access 2023 that I’m inclined to do Diamond Open Access 2024 (if the overall project continues).
  • Unless family situations or other events conspire against it, it’s likely that I will propose doing another round–Gold Open Access 2024 (GOA9) and Diamond Open Access 2024. Of course, the proposal may not be accepted..
  • I’m doing some significant cleanup work this summer and fall. To wit:
  • After downloading the DOAJ dataset on July 11–19,564 journals–I began by doing a country span, cleaning up shortened country names.
  • Now I’m doing a full scan to do three things:
  1. Look at subject assignments again, after formulating some reasonably coherent principles for ambiguous cases. The new set won’t be perfect, but should be a little cleaner.
  2. Look at publisher categories again, specifically moving a fair number of single-journal “o/open” publishers to u/university or s/society categories (and in at least one case moving a whole “t”/toll publisher to “o?-open based on the actual publisher description.
  3. For no-fee cases where the category is “o” or “t”, attempt to assign a support/funding category based on what information I can find. Right now, I’m using a fairly long (but still ambiguous!) set of subcategories, but when the task is done I’ll reduce it to two or three categories, The current set:
q: Questionable/unknown
s: Society or societies/gov
c: Collective/consortium
u: Universit(y|ies)
f:  Foundation, charity or business
d: Donations invited
x: S-t-o
i: Initial offer/low-volume
z: Defunct

So far, I’m just over halfway through the scan. Some time this fall, I’ll do a second download and scan newly-added journals. And if there’s no project next year? Such is life.

GOA8 and Diamond OA 2023: Stats as of August 1, 2023

Wednesday, August 2nd, 2023

Here’s what I’m seeing–possibly a little off:

Gold Open Access 8

  • PDF downloads: 158
  • Dataset: 143 views, 36 downloads.
  • Books: none.
  • [Now projecting Diamond OA 2023 around end of June.]

Diamond OA 2023

  • PDF downloads: 123
  • Books: none

Gold Open Access 7

  • PDF downloads: 1,160
  • Print version: 1 copy
  • Dataset: 4016 downloads
  • Country book: 229 downloads, no print

Diamond OA is off to a good start!

GOA9/Diamond OA 2024: Path forward

Monday, July 10th, 2023

With the singular (and welcome!) exception of Bianca Kramer, I received no feedback or suggestions with regard to plans for Gold Open Access 9 and (if done), Diamond OS 2024–specifically, rethinking and clarifying subject assignments and refining or continuing the Diamond OA analysis of wh0’s funding those Diamond OA journals that aren’t published by universities or societies.


Ms. Kramer’s notes and pointers to findings from the OA Diamond Journals Study suggest to me that others are doing relevant work regarding funding for Diamond OA at a level and with expertise that I can’t match, and that my work in this area may be irrelevant. (Ms. Kramer did NOT make any such suggestion, I hasten to add.)

The lack of any other feedback suggests either that nobody cares or that nobody has anything to say. The ebook are being used (151 downloads so far of GOA8, 82 of Diamond OA 2023), but…

[The fact that nobody mentioned that there was an error in the filename to download the dataset is not reassuring. It’s been fixed.]

So: Either tomorrow or Wednesday, barring last minute comments, I’ll proceed with a pass to refine subject assignments and publisher categories–but, based on what I haven’t heard, I won’t attempt to refine funding sources for diamond OA journals, and probably won’t deal with that aspect if there is a Diamond OA 2024.

Reminder: I need feedback by Friday, July 7 if possible

Wednesday, July 5th, 2023

I need to make some decisions about the path to a possible GOA9/DiamondOA 2024.

Here’s a link to one post:

So far, the only feedback suggests (indirectly) that my attempts to determine who funds Diamond OA is superfluous, with others doing it better. I’d be happy enough to believe that and scrap further efforts (and maybe scrap DiamondOA 2024?). If you have other opinions and advice, I need to hear about it now.

Also: the decision to continue this unpaid-for extra in the GOA studies is heavily dependent on whether it appears to be useful, as in used, as in strong download (or book sales) counts and maybe even a citation here and there. If you find the book (free or otherwise), let other people know about it. The links are always at

Here’s a link to the other post:

If you think my proposed approach to cleaning up subjects is fine, no need to comment. If not, well, I plan to look at each title (briefly) before the next study cycle begins–thus the July 7 deadline. [I will, of course, read later feedback. I always read feedback.]

Comment here, reply at mastodon, or email at

Gold Open Access stats for July 2, 2023

Monday, July 3rd, 2023

Gold Open Access 8

  • PDF downloads: 145
  • Dataset: 99 views, 11 downloads [all from figshare].
  • Diamond 23: 52 PDF downloads
  • Books: none.

Gold Open Access 7

  • PDF downloads: 1,135
  • Print version: 1 copy
  • Dataset: 368 views, 61 downloads [figshare] and 86 downloads from
  • Country book: 219 downloads, no print

Gold Open Access 6 [last report]

  • PDF downloads: 3,214. No print versions.
  • Dataset: 264 downloads
  • Country book: 489 downloads.

Refining GOA 3: How many years?

Wednesday, June 28th, 2023

This one’s easy, and I don’t need to make a decision until December 2023.

The question:

Should I deal with five years of data rather than the current six?

The issues:

  • The articles-and-journals-by-year tables almost always require smaller type, in some cases very small type.
  • The more data columns, the more possible pitfalls in handling.
  • On the other hand, six years makes for more interesting graphs and multi-edition graphs (although the latter, as in Chapter 4 of GOA8, is a mixed bag: five years for each line might be easier to make sense of.
  • When I’m adding new-to-DOAJ journals, fewer years means less data to have to find and copy.

The small type bothers me. But not a lot.

Let me know if you believe it’s worthwhile to retain the six-year tables (and spreadsheet). Otherwise, I’ll probably simplify down to five years, so that GOA9 would cover 2019-2023.

The usual: feedback in comments or email to