At DOAJ we are used to working with big sets of data. We have over 10000 journal records, over 8000 reapplication records, over 5000 user accounts, and more than 2 million pieces of article metadata. Making a change to that data is no small feat and sometimes it requires a great deal of manual editing. We receive regular notification when teams of individuals have used that data to do a study on open access publishing globally or locally, or in presentations, at open access events or in policy papers. This makes us happy because we know that DOAJ is the foremost trusted listing of open access journals and, since all the data in it is re-usable according to the terms of our CC BY-SA license, we believe it should be used and re-used as much as possible! Until recently we had never heard of a single person taking it upon themselves to go through every record in DOAJ and then use that data to write a book about the landscape of gold open access publishing.
Never until Walt Crawford that is. You might recognise Walt’s name either from his blog ‘Walt at Random‘ or from his regular ‘ejournal on the intersections of libraries, policy, technology and media’: ‘Cites & Insights‘. Walt is a regular commentator on open access issues and his blog has been active since 2005. In September 2015, Walt published the PDF version of his book ‘The Gold OA Landscape 2011-2014‘ on Lulu and I think you should buy it! Why? Well for one, you benefit from DOAJ and DOAJ has directly benefited from the creation process of the book: we were able to update many journal records as a direct result of Walt’s work. We were able to undertake a clean-up project because of Walt’s research—the size of which we had never been able to do before from just one source. We were able to identify and remove over 200 journals from DOAJ which, over time, had changed from the quality, open access journals that they were when they were first accepted into the Directory.
Walt has published a very good post on his blog about why you should purchase his book so I’ll not reiterate those reasons here. However, if you have ever used DOAJ data in your work, or if you consult the DOAJ regularly, or if you believe that it is important that DOAJ remains central to open access publishing, or if you want to show support for the open access movement then I urge you to purchase a copy of Walt’s work.