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Archive for the ‘TOC RSS feeds’ tag

Major landmark reached by JournalTOCs

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Now that we’ve hit the halfway point of April and are longing for our summer holidays, the tendency of most people at this point in the year is to start running out of steam.

We are delighted to announce that we just reached over 30,000 journals in our database thanks to the newly introduced JSON feeds by Cambridge University Press which pushed us over the edge to reach our goal. This is an extremely exciting development for us and it allows us to provide you, our users, with even more content.

JSON Feeds were originally developed by Brent Simmons and Manton Reece who are prevalent figures in the Apple community. For those of you who don’t know, JSON feeds are essentially the easier-to-read, less-buggy big brother to RSS and Atom feeds. They all follow a similar format but JSON feeds provide a more efficient way to accomplish the same tasks.

They are found everywhere these days from apps to websites such as Facebook. JSON has quickly become a developer’s favourite to use when developing API, so it’s no surprise that the websites of publishers of scholarly journals have started using this format. For us, Cambridge University Press’s decision to push JSON feeds is a huge step forward in content consumption. We expect that other journals follow in their footsteps.

JSON feeds also represent the opportunity to reverse the decreasing popularity of RSS feeds. JournalTOCs is extremely reliant on RSS feeds to bring you daily content but a few journals are now deciding not to offer them. Through the increasing prevalence of JSON feeds, we have an opportunity here to bring feed content back into the mainstream. JSON could be a good alternative for those publishers who are hesitant to implement RSS feeds for their journals. After all, JSON feeds are easy to create and use and do not rely on a third party platform while allowing the users to have more freedom and access to the content they want to follow.

More than anything, JSON feeds represent an additional source of content for JournalTOCs and will allow us to crack on with our important work by providing a more efficient route for us to take.

Keep your eyes peeled for other exciting JournalTOCs news on the horizon that we’re very eager to share with you all.


Written by Hayley Gibson

April 17th, 2018 at 10:05 am

Why publishers should never NOINDEX their RSS feeds

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(Update: Three months after this blog post was published,  OA Publishing London removed the NOINDEX meta-tag from their RSS feeds. Now, all the journals currently being published online by OA Publishing London have been restored in JournalTOCs.)

Last week, JournalTOCs stopped indexing all of the 40 journals published by OA Publishing London because this publisher took the unusual and illogical measure of requesting aggregators not to index (aggregate) the RSS feeds for the current issues of its journals. Tables of Contents from the OA Publishing London journals will no longer be updated at JournalTOCs. Those who have been following any of the 40 journals will not be able to keep up with new issues.

Why would OA Publishing London want to stop aggregators and search engines from crawling and collecting its RSS feeds? Years ago, it might just have made some sense using the noindex meta-tag for RSS feeds, but nowadays there is no need to noindex such feeds. Google and the rest of modern search engines can easily identify RSS feeds and they act on that by not including RSS feeds in web search results.

Publishers should, in reality, very much want their RSS feeds to be indexed, because it can help aggregators and search engines to direct users to where the newest content is. Search engines are smart enough to understand the difference between a feed and webpage, and use the feed as a pointer to the webpage where the real source of the content resides. Allowing search engines to index RSS feeds is therefore an important way to drive traffic to the webpages of the actual content.

There is no scenario in which a publisher is not interested in having their latest content indexed. Old feeds generators, such as the deprecated Feedburner, still provide users with the outdated option to noindex feeds to prevent them from being penalized by search engines. Publishers need to be reassured that that it is no longer an issue, and indexed feeds do not create penalty situations. Google itself will normally not show RSS feeds in search results.

The noindex meta-tag is not good for publishers. Any publisher who wants to enable RSS readers, aggregators and APIs to reuse details of their content should make sure to remove the noindex meta-tag from their RSS pages and from their software that generates RSS feeds.

The noindex meta-tag to be removed looks like this:

<meta name=”robots” content=”noindex“>

This code tells search engines and aggregators that they should not index or crawl the content of the RSS feeds.

So, if you want the abstracts of your latest publications to be indexed by JournalTOCs, search engine, aggregator or any web service, and thus ensure that hundreds of thousands of potential readers can discover your content, you should make sure you ARE NOT using the noindex meta-tag.

The noindex meta-tag can help in search engine optimization (SOA) but it should be used wisely, rather than simply assuming that it’s always a good idea to use it. noindex should only be used for web pages you don’t want showing up in search results or want to hide from the external world. For example a test page, archive page, or something similar that is not relevant for the publisher’s business; these should have the noindex tag, so that they don’t end up taking the place of the real important pages in search results (Google’s algorithm tends to avoid placing multiple links from the same domain on the front page (unless the website has a good ranking)).

For optimal crawling, Google recommends using also RSS/Atom feeds

RSS pages (feeds) are not only relevant pages; they are used by the search engines and aggregators to redirect users to your relevant webpages! They help to market your real content. They are good for everyone, including readers, authors, end users and for your business.

Written by Santiago Chumbe

January 26th, 2015 at 5:07 pm

How to grab an RSS feed of the latest articles of a journal and have it show up as a widget on other website

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To grab an RSS feeds for a particular journal from JournalTOCs, you can use the API call journals. For example:

The above call will grab the feeds produced and normalized by JournalTOCs for the journal with ISSN 0143-3369. You must provide the email address you have used to register with JournalTOCs as the value for the parameter “user”.

By default the links of the individual articles are the original links provided by the publisher or the OpenURL links created with your institutional OpenURL if found available. But, if you want that those links include your ezProxy, you need to use a Premium account. In this case, you or your Account Administrator need to go to your “Service Configuration” window and select the “Accounts” tab and find the “Links to use for the articles returned by the API” section. In this section tick the “Append the Institutional ezProxy” option and hit “Save”. Now your RSS feeds will include your proxy-server string in the URLs that go to individual articles (the <link> element in the RSS feeds (please use browser’s “View Page Source” to view the RSS content)

Normalized Journal TOC RSS feeds

Written by Santiago Chumbe

August 27th, 2014 at 6:11 pm

LM takes LibTOC service offline after months of being outdated

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The LibTOC current awareness service was removed from the Internet a few weeks ago. LM launched LibTOC in April 2013.

LM created LibTOC thanks to a JournalTOCs Premium license, which gave LM full access to up-to-date information to the entire database of JournalTOCs as well as premium access to journal’s metadata daily updates. LM didn’t renew the license in July 2013 and as a consequence LibTOC lost access to up-to-date journal information.

The agreement between LM and JournalTOCs was intended to provide LM with privileged access to JournalTOCs database to power the LibNet system, which was launched by LM last year.

Almost every day, many journal titles are transferred between publishers, cease publication, have their URLs changed, new titles are published, etc. Using the JournalTOCs Premium API, services can keep track of those changes in a systematic and automated way. In particular JournalTOCs can identify when the URL for a journal TOC RSS feeds have been changed, removed or when new TOC RSS feeds are made available. Thus, through its customised APIs, JournalTOCs constantly is providing up-to-date information on journal metadata to other current awareness services. Per each journal, the information includes:
– title
– publisher
– subject classification
– RSS feeds URL
– homepage URL
– access rights
– e-ISSN and print-ISSN numbers
– number of followers at JournalTOCs
– last issue publication date

Written by Santiago Chumbe

February 20th, 2014 at 12:27 pm

The JournalTOCs big metadata

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Every day, we create approx 5 thousand new records; most of those records are metadata of journal articles published in the previous 24 hours. The following image represents the metadata that JournalTOCs has collected so far.

JournalTOCs Big Metadata

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The table illustrated at the left hand side is a sample of the data source for this big metadata. It represents the number of new articles per day found in the journal TOC RSS feeds in March 2013.

Roughly 70% of that metadata was gathered in the last two years alone since JournalTOCs was launched as a public service in May 2011. As today, this metadata represents data of 1,795 publishers, 10,200 Premium users from licensed institutions, 22,050 journals, over 100,000 tracked research interests collected from followed journals that are frequently visited by any user (free and Premium registrations) and near 8 million articles that were published in the last 5 years. This big metadata is more than a matter of size. It can be an opportunity to find insights in new and emerging types of research, to support or create library management systems, and to help to answer questions regarding research publications. JournalTOCs offers ways to harvest this opportunity. It uses web services and standard harvesting protocols to open the door to the possibilities given by this big metadata, including:

+ Harvesting the metadata of all the journals indexed by JournalTOCs, which includes title, ISSN numbers, access rights, subject classification, publisher, number of follower, last issue published date, the URL of the journal RSS feeds and the journal homepage

+ Harvesting the complete database of the metadata of 8 million articles, including all the content collected from their RSS feeds

+ Querying the metadata of specific journals by ISSN or keywords in the journal title

+ Searching for articles in the current issues or the backfile issues

Learn how JournalTOCs can bring this big metadata to you

Written by Santiago Chumbe

May 31st, 2013 at 8:05 am