Launched back in April, the Initiative for Open Citations (I4OC) has a bold ambition: for 100% of citation data to be freely available for re-use. And so far this collaboration between publishers, researchers and other stakeholders is proving to be well on the way to achieving that goal.
For users to be able to use citation data to its full potential, it needs to be machine-readable. Many publishers are already sending key information about citations within the metadata they submit to Crossref – the problem is that from the outset the default for that information has been closed.
The good news is that all that is needed to flip the citation data from closed to open is a quick email to Crossref giving permission, and I4OC have already gained the support of many major publishers who have done just that. Thanks to the activity of the team of collaborators behind the initiative, the impact has been dramatic. Their latest announcement shows that open citation data hosted by Crossref has risen from 1% to now just over 45%, which equates to over 16 million articles.
OASPA champions openness and re-use of scholarly output and so is pleased to support I4OC which has an important objective that can be achieved by all publishers, whether or not the content of the article is open access. Once open, machine-readable citation data is free to be reused by researchers and the public, and it moves us much closer to a comprehensive and useful picture of scholarship.
If you are a publisher and depositing reference data with Crossref, all you need to do is to send an email to email@example.com requesting for that data to be made publicly available.
We encourage every member of OASPA to make sure that the reference you deposit with Crossref is made open without delay.