Using the Crossref REST API. Part 3 (with SHARE)

As a follow-up to our blog posts on the Crossref REST API we talked to SHARE about the work they’re doing, and how they’re employing the Crossref metadata as a piece of the puzzle.  Cynthia Hudson-Vitale from SHARE explains in more detail…

Continue reading “Using the Crossref REST API. Part 3 (with SHARE)”

Preprints are go at Crossref!

As content evolves, connections persist and new links are added
As content evolves, connections persist and new links are added

We’re excited to say that we’ve finished the work on our infrastructure to allow members to register preprints. Want to know why we’re doing this? Jennifer Lin explains the rationale in detail in an earlier post, but in short we want to help make sure that:

  • links to these publications persist over time
  • they are connected to the full history of the shared research results
  • the citation record is clear and up-to-date

Doing so will help fully integrate preprint publications into the formal scholarly record.

Continue reading “Preprints are go at Crossref!”

Smart alone; brilliant together. Community reigns at Crossref LIVE16

A bit different from our traditional meetings, Crossref LIVE16 next week is the first of a totally new annual event for the scholarly communications community.  Our theme is Smart alone; brilliant together.  We have a broad program of both informal and plenary talks across two days. There will be stations to visit, conversation starters, and entertainment, that highlight what our community can achieve if it works together.

Check out the final program.

We’re now opening the doors to all parties—our 5,000+ publisher members of all shapes and sizes—as well as the technology providers, funders, libraries, and researchers that we work with.  Our aim is to gather the ‘metadata-curious’ and have more opportunities to talk face-to-face to share ideas and information, see live demos, and get to know one another.

Mashup Day – Tuesday 1st November 12-5pm.  An ‘open house’ vibe, we’ll have several stations to visit each Crossref team, a LIVE Lounge, good food, and guest areas run by our friends at DataCite, ORCID, and Turnitin.  We’ll have some special programming too, on-the-hour lightning talks, including a wild talk at 2pm from a primatologist who speaks baboon!

Conference Day – Wednesday 2nd November 9am-5pm.  There is more of a formal plenary agenda this day, with keynote speakers from across the scholarly communications landscape.  Our primary goal is to share Crossref strategy and plans, alongside thought-provoking perspectives from our guest speakers.  We’ll hear from many corners of our community including:

  • Funder program officer, Carly Strasser (Moore Foundation) on “Publishers and funders as agents of change“,
  • Data scientist, Ian Calvert (Digital Science) on “You don’t have metadata“,
  • Open knowledge advocate, Dario Taraborelli (The Wikimedia Foundation) on “Citations for the sum of all human knowledge“, and
  • Scholarly communications librarian, April Hathcock (New York University) on “Opening up the margins“.

For our part, we will set out Crossref’s “strategy and key priorities” (Ed Pentz), “A vision for membership” (me, Ginny Hendricks), “The meaning of governance” (Lisa Hart Martin), “The case of the missing leg” (Geoffrey Bilder),”New territories in the scholarly research map” (Jennifer Lin), and “Relationships and other notable things” (Chuck Koscher).  

We will also set aside thirty minutes for the important Crossref annual business meeting, when we will announce the results of the membership’s vote, and welcome new board members.

I can’t wait to welcome you all.

Have you voted?

If you’re a voting member of Crossref you’ll have cast your vote already I hope! I’m so happy to see that people have voted in record numbers although it’s under 7% of our eligible members which is not high… more on member participation next week.

New Crossref DOI display guidelines are on the way


Crossref will be updating its DOI Display Guidelines within the next couple of weeks.  This is a big deal.  We last made a change in 2011 so it’s not something that happens often or that we take lightly.  In short, the changes are to drop “dx” from DOI links and to use “https:” rather than “http:”.  An example of the new best practice in displaying a Crossref DOI link is:

Hey Ho, “doi:” and “dx” have got to go

The updated Crossref DOI Display guidelines recommend that be used and not in DOI links.  Originally the “dx” separated the DOI resolver from the International DOI Foundation (IDF) website but this has changed and the IDF has already updated its recommendations so we are bringing ours in line with theirs.

We are also recommending the use of HTTPS because it makes for more secure browsing.  When you use an HTTPS link, the connection between the person who clicks the DOI and the DOI resolver is secure.  This means it can’t be tampered with or eavesdropped on.  The DOI resolver will redirect to both HTTP and HTTPS URLs.

Timing and backwards compatibility

We are requesting all Crossref member publishers and anyone using Crossref DOIs to start following the updated guidelines as soon as possible.  But realistically we are setting a goal of six months for implementation; we realize that updating systems and websites can take time.  We at Crossref will also be updating our systems within six months – we already use HTTPS for some of our services and our new website (coming very soon!) will use HTTPS.

An important point about backwards compatibility is that “” and “” are valid and will continue to work forever–or as long as Crossref DOIs continue to work–and we plan to be around a long time.

We need to do better

Reflecting on the 2011 update to the display guidelines it’s fair to say that we have been disappointed.  It is still much too common to see unlinked DOIs in the form doi:10.1063/1.3599050 or DOI: 10.1629/22161 or even unlinked in this form:

What’s so wrong with this approach?  To demonstrate, please click on this DOI doi:10.1063/1.3599050 – oh, you can’t click on it?  How about I send you to a real example of a publisher page.  What I’d like you to do is click the following link and then copy the DOI you find there and come back –

Are you back? I expect you had to carefully highlight the “10.1063/1.3599050” and then do “edit”, “copy”.  That wasn’t too bad but the next step is to put the DOI into an email and send it to someone.  But wait – what are they going to do with “10.1063/1.3599050”?  It’s useless.  If you want it to be useful you’ll have to add “” or in the front.

When publishers follow the guidelines it makes things easier – if you go to you’ll note that you can just right click on the full DOI link on the page and get a full menu of options of what to do with it.  One of which is to copy the link and then you can easily paste into an email or anywhere else.

However–putting a positive spin on the spotty adherence to the 2011 update to the DOI display guidelines–everyone has another chance with the latest set of updates to make all the changes at once!

More on HTTPS (future-proofing scholarly linking)

We take providing the central linking infrastructure for scholarly publishing seriously.  Because we form the link between publisher sites all over the web, it’s important that we do our bit to enable secure browsing from start to finish.  In addition, HTTPS is now a ranking signal for Google who gives sites using HTTPS a small ranking boost.

The process of enabling HTTPS on publisher sites will be a long one and, given the number of members we have, it may a while before everyone’s made the transition.  But by using HTTPS we are future-proofing scholarly linking on the web.

Some years ago we started the process of making our new services available exclusively over HTTPS.  The Crossref Metadata API is HTTPS enabled, and Crossmark and our Assets CDN use HTTPS exclusively. Last year we collaborated with Wikipedia to make all of their DOI links HTTPS.  We hope that we’ll start to see more of the scholarly publishing industry doing the same.

So–it’s simple–always make the DOI a full link – – even when it’s on the abstract or full text page of the content that the DOI identifies – and use “”.

2016 upcoming events – we’re out and about!

Check out the events below where Crossref will attend or present in 2016. We have been busy over the past few months, and we have more planned for the rest of year. If we will be at a place near you, please come see us (and support these organizations and events)!

Upcoming Events
SHARE Community Meeting, July 11-14, Charlottesville, VA, USA
Crossref Outreach Day – July 19-21 – Seoul, South Korea
CASE 2016 Conference – July 20-22 – Seoul, South Korea
ACSE Annual Meeting 2016 – August 10-11 – Dubai, UAE
Vivo 2016 Conference – August 17-19 – Denver CO, USA
SciDataCon – September 11-17 – Denver CO, USA
ALPSP – September 14-16 – London, UK
OASPA – September 21-22 – Arlington VA, USA
3:AM Conference – September 26 – 28 – Bucharest, Romania
ORCID Outreach Conference – October 5-6 – Washington DC, USA
Frankfurt Book Fair – October 19-23 – Frankfurt, Germany (Hall 4.2, Stand #4.2 M 85)
**Crossref Annual Community Meeting #Crossref16 – November 1-2 – London, UK**
PIDapalooza – November 9-10 – Reykjavik, Iceland
OpenCon 2016 – November 12-14 – Washington DC, USA
STM Digital Publishing Conference – December 6-8 – London, UK

The Crossref outreach team will host a number of outreach events around the globe. Updates about events are shared through social media so please connect with us via @CrossrefOrg.

Clinical trial data and articles linked for the first time

It’s here. After years of hard work and with a huge cast of characters involved, I am delighted to announce that you will now be able to instantly link to all published articles related to an individual clinical trial through the CrossMark dialogue box. Linked Clinical Trials are here!

In practice, this means that anyone reading an article will be able to pull a list of both clinical trials relating to that article and all other articles related to those clinical trials – be it the protocol, statistical analysis plan, results articles or others – all at the click of a button. Continue reading “Clinical trial data and articles linked for the first time”

Crossref Brand update: new names, logos, guidelines, + video

It can be a pain when companies rebrand as it usually requires some coordinated updating of wording and logos on websites, handouts, and slides. Nevermind changing habits and remembering to use the new names verbally in presentations.

Why bother?

As our infrastructure and services expanded, we sometimes branded services with no reference to Crossref. As explained in our The Logo Has Landed post last November, this has led to confusion, and it was not scalable nor sustainable. 

With a cohesive approach to naming and branding, the benefits of changing to (some) new names and logos should help everyone. Our aim is to stem confusion and be in a much better position to provide clear messages and useful resources so that people don’t have to try hard to understand what Crossref enables them to do. 

So while it may be a bit of a pain short-term, it will be worth it!

What are the new names? Continue reading “Crossref Brand update: new names, logos, guidelines, + video”

Dr Norman Paskin

Dr Norman Paskin
Dr Norman Paskin

It was with great sadness and shock that I learned that Dr Norman Paskin had passed away unexpectedly on the 27th March. This is a big loss to the DOI, Crossref and digital information communities. Norman was the driving force behind the DOI System and was a key supporter and ally of Crossref from the start. Norman founded the International DOI Foundation in 1998 and ran it successfully until the end of 2015 when he moved to a strategic role as an Independent Board Member. Continue reading “Dr Norman Paskin”

ORCID tipping point?

Today eight publishers have presented an open letter that sets out the rationale for making ORCID iDs a requirement for all corresponding authors, a move that is being backed by even more publishers and researchers as the news spreads on twitter with #publishORCID. Crossref is a founding organization of ORCID and an ongoing supporter so it’s great to see further uptake and even more benefit for the research community. Continue reading “ORCID tipping point?”