Seven Facts That Publishers Should Know About DOI

While some academic publishing metadata standards have yet to reach a “tipping point,” others are already well established. The Digital Object Identifier, or DOI, is one of these. 

  1. What is DOI? Administered by the nonprofit International DOI Foundation, these ISO-standard alphanumeric codes serve as “persistent identifiers” for digital content (including abstracts), related objects, and physical assets or files. 
  2. The benefit of a universal DOI: Nearly all journal articles are assigned a unique DOI, which facilitates more efficient management, tracking/searching, and automation by publishing and content management systems. It links to the object permanently, even if it is moved, modified, or updated. It also can contain associated metadata, although the data model requires only a limited set of “kernel” elements.
  3. I’m a publisher, how do I use DOI? Typically, publishers contact the agency, obtain a DOI to be used for all of the articles they publish, and work with the agency to register and use the DOIs created for individual articles. 
  4.  Who allocates the DOI? Various registration agencies manage the DOI records, maintain the metadata databases, and participate in the overall DOI community. For academic publishing, the primary agency is the nonprofit Crossref
  5. What should I know about Crossref? Crossref handles DOIs for preprints (unpublished drafts posted on preprint servers) as well as DOIs for articles accepted in the publication chain (from the initial manuscript submission through the final published article). These are in fact separate identifiers—to distinguish the state of the piece in the publishing process—but are also linked to one another. 
  6. Where will we see growth in DOI adoption? According to April Ondis, Crossref’s Strategic Marketing Manager, “The real growth in DOI adoption will be in the area of preprints and early content registration.”  Driven in part by the growth of Open Access, researchers are increasingly using preprint content to invite informal feedback before the article is formally accepted for peer review and publication. Ondis noted that the DOI for an accepted article is the primary, and permanent one, while the preprint’s DOI is separate but linked.
  7. Are there problems with DOIs? Authors, institutions, and research funders need to know about pending articles as soon as possible. “However, with a DOI there has to be a content URL. At article acceptance, the publisher often does not know where that content will be, so a DOI could not be registered,” said Crossref’s Director of Technology, Chuck Koscher.  The solution? Crossref will now host an ‘intent to publish’ landing page for these DOIs, based on an ‘intent to publish’ field in the metadata supplied by the publisher.

Read more about DOI and other metadata standards in our white paper, "All Things Connected." [click here]

 

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Mike Groth

Michael Groth is Director of Marketing at Cenveo Publisher Services, where he oversees all aspects of marketing strategy and implementation across digital, social, conference, advertising and PR channels. Mike has spent over 20 years in marketing for scholarly publishing, previously at Emerald, Ingenta, Publishers Communication Group, the New England Journal of Medicine and Wolters Kluwer. He has made the rounds at information industry events, organized conference sessions, presented at SSP, ALA, ER&L and Charleston, and blogged on topics ranging from market trends, library budgets and research impact, to emerging markets and online communities.. Twitter Handle: @mikegroth72

Adapting to Change in Scholarly Publishing: A Full Picture of the History of a Research Work

Crossref Changes its Policy and Will Accept Preprints

In August 2016, Crossref will enable members to assign Crossref DOIs to preprints. This is major news for the scholarly publishing community and an example of how the needs and practices of modern researchers impact change. Previously, Crossref's policy prevented members from registering and assigning DOIs to "duplicative works." However, in the creation and dissemination of scholarly content today, users have a real need to access earlier versions of research papers.

Original content which is intended for formal publication, including content that has been submitted, but has not yet been accepted for publication.
— Definition of "preprint" according to Crossref's Board of Directors

This policy change will require each preprint to link to any future related versions of the work. The preprint DOI will be different from the DOI assigned by the publisher to the accepted manuscript and version of record. Crossref will provide tools to make it easier for members to do that.

Geoffrey Bilder, Director of Strategic Initiatives at Crossref, states "A number of Crossref members are exploring publishing workflows that blur the historically hard distinctions between a draft manuscript, a preprint, a revised proof, an accepted manuscript, the version-of-record, and subsequent corrections and updates, any of which may be used and cited at almost any point in the publishing process."

Ed Pentz, Executive Director at Crossref, explains "Adapting to the needs of our members, while remaining neutral toward their business models, is critical to Crossref's fundamental ability to maintain a clear citation record and let researchers easily identify the best available version of a document or research object."

Business models and real world usage drive change. As scholarly publishing models become more fluid, supporting tools, infrastructure, service providers, and others must also adapt. Crossref anticipates its underlying schema, services, and APIs will be in place by the end of August. 

More information and background on Crossref's history can be enjoyed by clicking here.

Comment

Mike Groth

Michael Groth is Director of Marketing at Cenveo Publisher Services, where he oversees all aspects of marketing strategy and implementation across digital, social, conference, advertising and PR channels. Mike has spent over 20 years in marketing for scholarly publishing, previously at Emerald, Ingenta, Publishers Communication Group, the New England Journal of Medicine and Wolters Kluwer. He has made the rounds at information industry events, organized conference sessions, presented at SSP, ALA, ER&L and Charleston, and blogged on topics ranging from market trends, library budgets and research impact, to emerging markets and online communities.. Twitter Handle: @mikegroth72