CrossRef Member Update
Ed Pentz, Executive Director
Members, Affiliates and Agents
Members: 234 (http://www.crossref.org/01company/06publishers.html)
CrossRef Annual Meeting, September 16th, 2003
The Annual Meeting is September 16th, 2003 and will be held at IEE, Savoy Place, London. Please register as soon as possible for the meeting - the agenda (http://www.crossref.org/10meetings/2003_agenda.html) and online registration form (http://www.crossref.org/10meetings/2003_reservation.html) are now available. We are also happy to announce that members are invited to a reception at the British Library, John Ritblat Gallery: Treasures of the British Library on Monday, September 15th from 6:30PM-8PM.
On September 17th there will be a general technical meeting for CrossRef members from 09:00-12:00 at IEE, Savoy Place, to review current functionality and provide input on future developments for 2004. The registration form (http://www.crossref.org/10meetings/2003_techreservation.html) for this meeting is available and an agenda will be available very soon.
Election: the election will be held at the Annual Meeting. Materials for the election and the official notice of the meeting will be sent to all members by regular mail on August 5th. After the materials are mailed they will also be posted to the website. The materials that members will received include a proxy form. It is very important to return the proxy to CrossRef prior to the meeting to ensure that there is a quorum. Even if you are planning to attend the meeting you should send the proxy and then your vote at the meeting will take precedence over the proxy. If there are any Independent Nominations (see below), you can vote for them by sending a new proxy prior to the meeting or voting at the meeting itself (this means that sending a proxy now doesn't restrict you from changing your vote).
Independent Nominations: there is an official slate of candidates for board seats but the CrossRef By-Laws also allow for Independent Nominations (and Independent Nominations are very welcome!). The relevant section of the By-Laws states:
Independent nominations. Nominations for Directors may also be made, endorsed with the names of not less than ten (10) members of the Corporation, if forwarded to the Secretary at least five (5) days prior to the annual meeting of the Corporation for immediate transmittal by him or her to the members.
2nd Quarter Financials
The 2nd quarter covering the months of April, May and June generated $654,000 of revenue - slightly over budget by $48,000 (8%). This quarter's revenue was substantially lower than the previous quarter ($787,000), mainly due to lower revenue from member retrievals and a decrease in the Local Hosting delivery fee (due to one Local Host moving to the 'first match' fee option). In the first quarter a number of members did large batches of one-time queries.
The 2003 six month year-to-date revenue of $1,441,000 was above budget by $229,000 (19%) and ahead of last year by $620,000 (76%).
The 2nd quarter operating expenses were $484,000 or $17,000 (4% over budget). This unfavorable expense variance was more than offset by the 1st quarter favorable variance of $104,000 (19%) under budget and provided a favorable year-to-date budget expense variance of $87,000 (10%).
The financial outlook for the balance of 2003 appears quite positive. The 3rd and 4th quarter is forecasted to be close to budget. The 2003 full year forecast projects revenue at $2,525,000, or $101,000 over budget. Operating expenses are forecasted (for the same full year period) to be significantly under budget ($173,000). The full year net income is projected at $507,000.
While the finances are quite positive, CrossRef must begin repaying loans of $2,000,000 plus interest starting in 2004. Repayment of the loans is forecasted to be complete in 2006 but as with all forecasts, the situation can change.
Members Not Yet Linking References
CrossRef recently instituted a non-linking fee for publishers who have been members for longer than 18 months, but who do not have outbound links in their journal references. At present, roughly half of the CrossRef membership is not linking, but many of these have joined the organization only within the last year. We will soon launch a survey of non-linking members to find out what types of technical support CrossRef should consider offering to increase the number of publishers with outbound links. If you are among the non-linkers, please be sure to respond to the survey promptly.
At its meeting on July 29, 2003, the board approved the new fee structure detailed below for 2004. The new new structure spreads the costs of the CrossRef system fairly across members and affiliates and removes barriers to the use of DOIs (since use of the DOIs will benefit readers of online content and drive traffic to CrossRef members' content). The two major changes are the elimination of the DOI retrieval fee for members and affiliates and a change to the annual membership fees and how the fees are assessed. Changing the CrossRef fee structure does pose some risks and it may be necessary to change the fees in future based on experience with the new structure. This could even include re-introducing the retrieval fee.
The fees must generate enough money not only to cover operating expenses but also to invest in system improvements and new features, to repay the startup loans and create a reasonable cash reserve. This must be balanced against keeping the fees as low as possible for members.
Some of the main points of the new fee structure are:
Full details of the new fee structure will be sent to members prior to the Annual Meeting in September. A review of the new fee structure will be given at the Annual Meeting. Feel free to email the Executive Director with questions.
Business Development Update
Of CrossRef's 235 members, the most recent publishers to join came through Project Muse and include Indiana University Press, George Washington/Institute for Ethnographic Research, University of St. Thomas - Logos, The University of North Carolina Press, University of Minnesota Press, George Mason University Press, The Catholic University of America Press, Music Library Association, University of Hawai'i Press, The Kent State University Press, Linguistic Society of America, University of Nebraska Press, Brookings Institution Press, and Wayne State University Press.
Since the library affiliate fee has been dropped, the number of libraries joining CrossRef has grown substantially and is currently at 115. The most recent additions are Amherst College, Mount Holyoke College, City University of Hong Kong, Vienna University of Economics & Business Administration, and Universita' Degli Studi di Milano. Sirsi and Innovative Interfaces have recently signed on as CrossRef affiliates, joining the growing number of vendors who offer local linking solutions to libraries.
Library Advisory Board
The next meeting of the Library Advisory Board will be scheduled in conjunction with ALA mid-winter, January 9-14, 2004.
CrossRef Presentations, Ads, Articles
Be sure not to miss the interview with Ed Pentz on the cover of the July/August issue of Information Today!
Another recent publication by CrossRef staff include "Linking Evolved: The Future of Online Research" by Amy Brand and Kristen Fisher in Research Information Magazine (http://www.researchinformation.info/rispring03linking.html).
CrossRef Search: report on end-user and publisher surveys
Please refer to the members-only area of the CrossRef website for our report on the end-user and publisher surveys completed earlier this year (http://www.crossref.org/06members/CrossRef_search_report.pdf) . The results summarized in this report suggest that user demand exists for a robust full-text search service, and that users would most likely use this tool in conjunction with, rather than instead of, existing navigational tools. This report concentrates on the basic issues that the Board identified as being critical to evaluating the initiative. The prototype has been completed and CrossRef is not developing its own central search service. An update will be provided at the Annual Meeting.
The new system has been performing exceedingly well. Problems resulting from system failures or bugs are extremely low. For May through July 25, full system availability percentage was 99.5% (estimate). Planned outage (system completely unavailable) percentage: 0.1%. Unplanned outage (power failure): 0.4%.
Ongoing issue to resolve are: Conflict resolution (Journal title correction), Member system errors (missing or improper metadata in deposits) and doing data audits (verifying data between CrossRef / handle / publisher / local hosts)
DOI Resolution Statistics
Many members received a report in Excel of the number of DOI resolutions to their content. This information will be sent out on a regular basis in future (creation of the report is currently not automated). DOI Resolutions are when a user clicks on a DOI in the form of http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/35057062 - the http://dx.doi.org/ proxies records that a resolution has occurred and tracks the prefix of the DOI to determine the publisher. There are limitations with this: if pages are cached, at a university for example, the link to the article will not go through the http://dx.doi.org/ server. However, the resolution stats give very important information on how much DOIs are being used and the level of growth in DOI use.
Summary of System Changes for 2003
XML Schema- we will soon be turning off support for the XML DTD. A test parser and instructions are available for the XML Schema. ** Please contact Chuck Koscher (email@example.com) if you have any problems or questions.
Forward Linking - a description and specification for Forward Linking (i.e. providing "cited by" links using DOIs) is now available. The board approved further investigation of forward linking technical and policy issues. This project will be presented at the Annual Meeting for review and discussion.
DOIs for Scientific Data
Names for Life is a project to assign DOIs to scientific names and the taxa they represent. A paper on this by Garrity and Lyons - "Future-Proofing Biological Nomenclature" is available in OMICS: A Journal of Integrative Biology, 7:31-33, http://dx.doi.org/10.1089/153623103322006562 (only available to subscribers). A model for assigning DOIs to prokaryotic taxa is being developed as a test case. As Names for Life develops, CrossRef will be looking at ways to collaborate with the project.
A paper has also been submitted to the Bulletin of Zoological Nomenclature Jerald D Harris of the University of Pennsylvania proposing that the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN) be updated to accept articles published online with a DOI as valid, citable sources of zoological taxonomic information and that their electronic publication dates be considered definitive, which is not the case now.
The IDF has reconstituted the Registration Agencies Working Group (RAWG) as a forum for the IDF Registration Agencies (there are now 7 RAs) to work together and be more directly involved in the work of the IDF. This is a very important development and is a step towards to the IDF becoming an operating federation of RAs, rather than a membership organization. CrossRef is Chair of the RAWG, and the first teleconference was held July 22. One of the main issues is to develop a more formal agreement between the RAs and the IDF - a draft of this agreement is under review by the RAs, and CrossRef's counsel will be coordinating input from all the RAs.
The RAWG will be the mechanism for working out interoperability requirements across the different RAs and to implement comment services, such as multiple resolution, using the DOI API.
General DOI news and announcements are available at http://www.doi.org/announce.html
NISO and the Sheridan Press have published Metadata Demystified - A Guide for Publishers (PDF) authored by CrossRef's own Amy Brand, Frank Daly and Barbara Myers. From the NISO site - "Good metadata helps publishers of books and journals make the most of their content! Metadata Demystified, published by NISO and Sheridan Press, explains how and why, reports on current practices, and links to additional resources."