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Hypermedia Online Publishing: the Transformation of the Scholarly Journal

5.4.6 Need for associated intermediary processes

The size of the journal literature brings it with it significant problems of access. Authors want to ensure that their work is read, and preferably by those who are most interested or affected by its content; usually their own invisible college. Readers want to find the most relevant articles among all those continually being produced. Unfortunately, it is not possible to search the print literature directly. This has given rise to a wealth of secondary indexing and abstracting services which allow researchers to search document surrogates. These services are delivered on CD-ROM and/or online and are a significant industry in their own right. Having a journal listed in the right service is almost essential for access to readers (and hence acceptance by authors). The new (in the early 1990s) Online Journal of Current Clinical Trials (OJCCT) [Keyhani, 1993] suffered a significant credibility gap until it was indexed in Index Medicus and Medline (the two premier indexing services for the medical community) [Peek and Newby, 1996, pp. 7-8].

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© Andrew Treloar, 2001. * http://andrew.treloar.net/ * andrew.treloar@gmail.com