I thought you might be interested in how we are beginning to deal with
the email request button here at Birmingham. We have only used it for
one item in the eprints and the author (in 3 months) has not had any
However we have begin to experiment with it being on the etheses part of
our repository for those theses which are restricting access to the full
text. Students can advise whether they simply want the full text to be
requested and then we send the full text out or they can request that
they be contacted should anyone request the thesis. To this end we have
attached the request a copy button.
We are now automating the system so that having completed the mandatory
fields in the request a copy button (which comes to the repository
manager ie me) the requestor receives an email asking them to confirm
that they are happy for their details to be forwarded on to the author.
Once we have received that explicit confirmation (and legal services
were keen we had that) we then contact the author (again with a semi
automated response) which outlines the options for the author (ie yes or
no to the full text). Some authors have indeed allowed the full text to
be sent out to some but not to others. Each time it is for the author to
decide. None have yet changed the status of their thesis as they are
still wanting to publish in most cases.
The button has been in operation since late December 2009 and it has
generated a huge (ish) response. We have been in receipt of about 25
requests really for the same half dozen theses. We expect this to grow
hence the need to try and automate the process as much as possible.
An example would be see http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/360/
Authors seem generally intrigued on who is requesting and (for some)
overwhelmed at the number of requests.
Happy to answer any questions.
From: Repositories discussion list
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Stevan Harnad
Sent: 03 February 2010 18:36
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Email Eprint Request Button: Too good for OA's own good?
Forwarding the interesting post below from Colin Smith, who is
wondering whether the semi-automatic "email eprint request" button
tempt authors to deliberately make their deposits Closed Access
instead of Open Access so that can they get more detailed usage
metrics for their papers, for research assessment purposes!
The possibility was raised, when the button was first designed, that
authors could get addicted to the richer vanity metrics that Closed
Access plus the button provides. http://bit.ly/9ThxNu
But if you go to Colin's blog to see the responses from IR managers
that have since implemented the button, you will find that that is not
what tends to happen. Rather, authors tire of vanity metrics after a
while and instead prefer sparing themselves those extra keystrokes by
re-setting their papers as Open Access.
It might, though, be useful to implement a "button" for Open Access
papers too, allowing users to identify themselves and their interests
to the author, if they wish... -- SH
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: C.J.Smith <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Wed, Feb 3, 2010 at 11:27 AM
Subject: Is the "request copy" button good for OA?
To: [log in to unmask]
Members of this list may be interested in a blog post I've just
written on the "request copy" button used by some repositories
(including my own). I'd welcome your responses not only on this list,
but also as comments to the blog post itself.
Research Repository Manager
Open Research Online (ORO)
Open University Library
Tel: +44(0)1908 332971
Email: [log in to unmask]
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