[Taxacom] Finding articles

Paul van Rijckevorsel dipteryx at freeler.nl
Fri Dec 16 02:26:17 CST 2011

It has been awhile since I tried to get one of the (remaining)
hard-to-get papers out of the library system, so I don't know
if progress has been made in this respect.

As to coverage by BHL, my impression is not that there is an
80% coverage of pre-1923 literature, but perhaps somewhere
near half, and probably less, if rarer, more out-of-the-way
publications are taken into account. Even some well-established
publications are not there; I cannot imagine that Science is all
that rare, but BHL is still missing several volumes. No doubt
these will be added in due course, but it shows that BHL has
not finished with the low-hanging fruit.


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Francisco Welter-Schultes" <fwelter at gwdg.de>
To: "taxacom" <TAXACOM at MAILMAN.NHM.KU.EDU>; "Paul van Rijckevorsel" 
<dipteryx at freeler.nl>
Sent: Thursday, December 15, 2011 4:23 PM
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Finding articles

> John you wrote "some early articles", not all, and this is
> absolutely in agreement with the situation as I see it.
> I checked the nomenclaturally relevant literature for the non-marine
> molluscs in Europe, 2000 papers, 1000 from before 1923. Of the
> pre-1923 works, 80 % were online, mostly at BHL. Papers between 1924
> and 1990 only 10 %, papers after 1990 15 %. Papers after 1995 were
> easier to obtain in electronic form because of many semi-illegal PDFs
> poking around, and you can often consult the author to send you a
> PDF. Most problematic are those from 1923-1990, most of this
> literature must still be ordered in the hard copy form in a public
> library, as it had been 30 years ago.
> Missing 20 % of the pre-1923 literature: gaps in serial runs,
> non-biological literature (travel reports etc.), rare works, Italian
> and Scandinavian works, local European journals that were published
> in languages other than English.
> I anticipate that it will be very expensive to fill the gaps.
> Filling gaps in serial runs is technically the easiest problem and
> could be done by BHL libraries. Rare works can result to be almost
> impossible. Non-biological literature can be done by BHL but
> requires manual imput by users. European non-English non-German
> journals could partly be done by BHL libraries (they have holdings of
> perhaps 20-40 % of the Italian, Scandinavian and local French
> serials), other non-English literature must be done in local projects
> and depends on local and national funding resources.
> In summary, it will take a long time until the last 10 % or the
> pre-1923 works will be online, and I see still no solution
> visible at the horizon how to get the literature from 1923-1995
> online in any legal form. European and US libraries have no chance.
> If we are very happy, Australians and Chinese will help us some day
> for the works until 1955.
> I strongly recommend to help BHL by using the BHL scanning request
> function. BHL libraries cannot know which travel literature and
> otherwise non-biological literature might contain biodiversity
> related content. They definitely need direct input from the taxonomic
> community.
> Francisco
> University of Goettingen, Germany
> www.animalbase.org

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