Members, Affiliates and Agents


I'm happy to report that CrossRef activity continues to be excellent as 2003 comes to a close. We are approaching 10 million DOIs and the DOI resolution numbers continue to be between 4.5 and 5 million - this is a very important statistic because it represents end user use of DOIs. In addition more conference proceedings and books are being added to the system.  In 2004 we will begin breaking down the number of DOIs by categories (journals, conference proceedings and books).

Journals: 9,063
Total Records: 9,886,961
November DOI resolutions: 4,753,392
Linkers: 144
Depositors: 223

Deposits YTD: 3,295,409 current and backfile
Queries YTD: 90,969,257 (references submitted to match DOIs)
Matches YTD: 16,907,392 (number of DOIs returned)
Overall Match Rate: 19%

DOIs in Use

John Wiley & Sons is registering DOIs for books and book chapters - see for the book and for a chapter. Oxford Scholarship Online is also registering DOIs for books (but not yet displaying the DOIs on their website) -

A Google search on the PLOS Biology DOI doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0000053 shows a good set of links - to the article on the PLOS site and to a copy at PubMed Central. In addition there is a link to a positive mention of DOIs in a scientist's blog (what is a blog? see at the Wang Lab at Princeton University. See the November 24th entry at

This highlights the issue of educating users what to do with DOIs. In many cases the DOI will just be a link to click on but users need to know that DOIs are resolved through, the central DOI Resolver. In addition, CrossRef offers a resolver box at Publishers can offer their own DOI resolver or finders. Nature has created a very useful Internet Explorer Toolbar ( that has the option of resolving a DOI. Elsevier's ScienceDirect has a help link next to each DOI to explain using DOIs to cite an article (an example is at doi:10.1016/j.tet.2003.10.040).

CrossRef will be making an effort to get DOIs included in reference management software such as EndNote and ProCite. Most online publishing systems export citations to a variety of formats and the DOI should be included. CrossRef will also be investigating letting the reference manager software retrieve DOIs for references automatically - this means that articles submitted electronically to publishers could already have DOIs in them.

Journal Ownership Change Policy

CrossRef will be developing a policy concerning journal ownership changes. When a publisher acquires a journal from another publisher who has assigned DOIs, the acquiring publisher should not register new DOIs - control of the existing DOIs will be transfered to the acquiring publisher who can then register new URLs for the existing DOIs.  

Cases where the original publisher and the acquiring publisher will both host the backfile presents some interesting problems. Multiple Resolution could help deal with this situation by allowing two URLs to be registered with the DOI; however, the process would have to be controlled by the acquiring publisher.

CrossRef Annual Meeting 2004

The 2004 Annual Meeting will be on November 9th, 2004 at the Charles Hotel, Cambridge, MA (

Members Not Yet Linking References

CrossRef is continuing to charge the 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. I'm happy to report that there has been an increase in the number of publishers linking. The next round of non-linking notices will go out early in 2004.

Administrative Matters: 2004 fees and membership agreement

Thanks to everyone who sent in their Membership Data forms. We have started sending out invoices for the the 2004 Annual Membership fees - all members will be on a calendar year cycle. Credit for any unused portion of the 2003 fee is given on the invoices. The 2004 Member fees are on the website - Now that the retrieval is being removed we hope to see an increase in the use of DOIs.

Business Development Update

Conferences - Carol Meyer represented CrossRef at the Charleston Conference in November with a presentation entitled "Journal Linking and Beyond." Carol also visited Yale Law School later in the month to address The New England Consortium of Law Librarians on CrossRef's behalf.

CrossRef had its own stand for the first time this year at London Online. Traffic at the booth was non-stop. During the week of the show, CrossRef staff gave presentations at STM Innovations, the Ingenta Publisher Forum, and at the Online venue itself. CrossRef was also short-listed for the "User Experience" prize from the International Information Industry Awards.

Please stop by the CrossRef booth at PSP in February!

New articles about CrossRef - The "CrossRef" entry in the Encyclopedia of Information Science was published earlier this month ( Reprints are available upon request from Look for forthcoming articles on CrossRef in Serials Review and the ICSTI Forum.

New members - Among the several new members who joined CrossRef in last two months are the Society for Neuroscience, University of California Press, Woodhead Publishing Ltd., and Ashley Publications. CrossRef now offers a click-thru agreement to libraries, and libraries continue to sign up in large numbers in order to enhance their OpenURL resolvers with DOI re-direction and CrossRef metadata.

Website - The CrossRef website will sport a new look in 2004. One new offering planned is a "featured publisher" section, detailing how CrossRef has impacted individual members. If you are interested in participating and can offer detailed information, such as increase in traffic to your content as a result of linking, please contact Amy Brand.

CrossRef System

2003 and 2004 System Changes - during 2003 extensive changes were made and new features added to improve the CrossRef system. Another set of changes is planned for 2004. This is all summarized in the 2004 Proposed Changes document (PDF, 137k).

Performance - recently we have been reconfiguring the current database server to optimize system performance. These changes took place starting in mid October when we noticed a moderate slow down in through put and were completed by the start of December. As a result of these actions we've seen the processing of batch queries return to an acceptable rate and the response time for synchronous HTTP requests return to approximatly 1 second/succesful query. In addition, we discovered that users who submit large numbers of concurrent HTTP query requests have had the effect of blocking other user access to the system. As a result we've implemented a limit (currently set to 10) to the number of concurrent requests any single user may have open.

We've also recently completed installation of a new database server which we hope to have operational by the end of the year. This new machine, along with the new front end servers installed early in the year, completes an upgrade to CrossRef's operating platform.

IDF Update

In membership news from the IDF, the Conference of European National Librarians (CENL) has taken over the membership of the informal consortium of three national libraries (British, German, and Netherlands) to CENL. This extends the scope of the participation in the International DOI Foundation to 43 library members from 41 European countries. The British Library (UK), Die Deutsche Bibliothek (Germany) and the Koninklijke Bibliotheek (The Netherlands) will remain as the main contacts for CENL.

From the IDF Director's report:

"CrossRef and Copyright Clearance Center initiated a practical proposal to use multiple resolution with the DOI API. That discussion has helped clarify the notion of Application Profile, evolving it even further away from the early concept of genre and more towards an arbitrary grouping mechanism. It is becoming clearer that services applicable to a given DOI will depend less on the 'type' of DOI and more on specific agreements between resource owners and service providers.

2.4 RA Working Group. The RAWG has been continuing discussion of a formal RA-IDF agreement. A draft RAWG charter has been published on the RAWG list and will be in the next release of the DOI Handbook after consideration and approval by the Board. Topics for future consideration include:

• Policy for proxy servers - the desire to have local proxies in some branded form. IDF is sympathetic to the notion that "local politics" demands at least a perception of "local control"; however, what degree of local control is compatible with the continuation of service and the global nature of the viability of the DOI system is our overriding consideration, particularly given the long-term and international uses of the DOI.

• Rolling out further support for proxy and LHS mirrors and resilience

• Business policies appropriate for use of materials from multiple RAs by one customer

2.5 Appropriate Copy - the next generation (unofficial title) Discussions have been held with several interested parties with a view to extending the successful earlier “Appropriate Copy” work (now used with CrossRef and some library service providers) to reflect the more complex world likely to be encountered soon of multiple RAs and multiple vendor solutions. NISO, DLF, IDF, CNRI and some specific vendors are all interested in this so we intend to declare a joint project and assemble a small group to decide on next steps."

Other News

ISO ISSN Revision Working Group

Ed Pentz will be participating in ISO/TC 46/SC 9/Working Group 5, which has been set up to discuss revisions to the ISSN standard (to be published as ISO 3297, 4th edition). The website for the Working Group is at The first meeting is January 24 and 25th, 2004. Please provide any input to Ed - what would you like to see the ISSN do or not do? Work to be done includes:

2.1.1 Specify any agreed extensions or changes to the scope of the ISSN system;

2.1.2 Clarify the types of resources to which ISSN may and may not be assigned, including those in electronic formats;

2.1.3 Provide definitions to support the introduction of any new concepts into the revised standard (e.g. "continuing resource");

2.1.4 Incorporate specifications for the display of ISSN on various formats of eligible resources, including electronic resources;

2.1.5 Clarify policies for assigning ISSN to different editions or versions of a resource;

2.1.6 Specify the required metadata associated with each ISSN assignment;

2.1.7 Incorporate other agreed revisions necessary for the alignment of ISO 3297 with the latest version of the ISSN Manual.

2.4 To confirm the rules of procedure and the decision-making process for matters affecting the administration of the ISSN system as a whole, including the minimum criteria for ISSN registration agencies.

Open Archives Initiative (OAI)

CERN is holding a workshop on Innovations in Scholarly Communication: Implementing the benefits of OAI" 12-14th February 2004 ( While the OAI metadata harvesting protocol (OAI-PMH) is neutral (and interesting), it's unfortunate to see that the CERN workshop is almost entirely focused on promoting Open Access journals. The mission statement for the workshop states - "libraries have not yet reaped large benefits from the OAI's success. Through publishers' "big deals," more commercial journal titles than ever before are accessible, and library budgets are tightly bound to them in long-term contracts. Library customers are growing accustomed to the enormous comfort offered by the databases of those publishers and, as a consequence, switching to alternative models for scientific communication has become less and less acceptable. We want to change this."


Presentations from the NISO workshops on OpenURL and Metasearch in October are available at Ed Pentz gave a presentation on OpenURL, DOI and CrossRef. For a general overview of OpenURL, Oliver Pesch's presentation is highly recommended.


EDItEUR is leading work on implementation guidelines for the revised ISBN - information on the ISBN Revision is at

ONIX for Serials work is continuing through a Joint Working Party of NISO and EDItEUR (Serials Release Notification, Serials Online Holdings and Serials Publications and Subscriptions messages are being developed). Joint management by NISO and EDItEUR of ONIX for Serials is being considered. ONIX for Serials will be discussed at the NISO Standards Briefing at LITA's Standards Interest Group (