Google Scholar’s publisher policies insist that people searching journal articles through Google “must be offered at least a complete abstract.” Content which is restricted to subscribers can only be included “as long as you can show a complete abstract (or more) to all users who arrive from Google and Google Scholar.”
So why do all my Google Scholar searches retrieve SpringerLink and IngentaConnect pages which purport to be PDF files — even including text from the paper body in the Google summary — but upon clicking the link turn out to be generic portal pages asking for money? Whether I even get the paper’s abstract or not depends upon the IP address from which I surf.
Look, I don’t expect to get online content for free. (I certainly deserve it, but that’s a different story.) Nevertheless, a little bit of forthright behavior and a willingness to play by the rules already written down would make everybody who uses the Web for academic purposes a whole lot happier.
- John Baez, “Web Spamming by Academic Publishers” (31 July 2007), The n-Category CafÃ©.
- Pierre Far, “Academic Publishers as Spammers” (2 August 2007), BlogSci.