What pre-publication checks would you like to see?

Version 3.2 of OJS/OMP/OPS added support for writing your own pre-publication checks. By default, OJS only checks if the submission has passed the review stage and is assigned to an issue. But additional checks could be written to reinforce quality publishing standards or prevent mistakes.

Here are some ideas off the top of my head:

  • Prevent a submission from being published if it does not have at least one galley named PDF.
  • Prevent a submission from being published if one or more of the authors does not have an ORCID.
  • Multilingual journals could prevent a submission from being published if it is missing a title and abstract in all supported languages.

It requires coding to make these pre-publication checks. But if there are some popular requirements, we’d like to write a plugin or two and make them available to everyone.

What pre-publication checks do you wish you had for your journal, press or preprint server?

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Here’s an example of what pre-publication checks might look like. @Dulip_Withanage and I created this prototype during the Pittsburgh sprint.

metadata-checks-sprint

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First of all: Thank you for implementing this! I’m sure it will be a great help.

Would it be possible to check, if a DOI has been assigned?
We would also like to create a check, if an URN has been assigned to galleys (even better if it could be checked, if the galley is a pdf). I think most of the world isn’t interested in this, but if you think it’s possible we could create this ourselves.

Another question: Does this work with the quick submit plugin (obviously there cannot be a check for the DOI, because there is no way to assign a DOI in the quick submit plugin, but with other checks)?

Kind regards
Daniela

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Thanks @NateWr! This is a great feature.

I think the suggestion by @UBWolf to check for DOIs is an important one.

A general check for metadata completeness also sounds like a good idea. So it would prevent publication unless all essential metadata fields have content, e.g. keywords, subject, authors, title, assigned to volume.

Some might only be warnings, for example:

  • Funders listed (some work is unfunded)
  • References entered and have been updated if there were any revisions (some article types might not have references, e.g. editorials)
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Thanks @UBWolf and @shaun,

Would it be possible to check, if a DOI has been assigned?

Yes! In 3.2, if you have the DOI plugin enabled for articles, and you have not entered a DOI, you will get a warning.

Selection_239

This will not prevent publication, though, because a lot of journals mint DOIs for articles but not editorials, for example. It would be easy to write a plugin that blocked publishing completely, though, and that would probably be a popular one. We should probably write that into the existing DOI plugin as a setting.

Sorry @UBWolf and @shaun, hit reply to early, following up on the rest of your comments here.

We would also like to create a check, if an URN has been assigned to galleys (even better if it could be checked, if the galley is a pdf). I think most of the world isn’t interested in this, but if you think it’s possible we could create this ourselves.

It’s definitely possible. Exactly the kind of thing these checks were meant for. Happy to help guide you on how it would be done.

I don’t think so. Does the Quick Submit plugin let you publish immediately as you submit? If so, it would probably need to be revised to support these checks.

The challenge we face is that every journal does things differently, and often has different metadata requirements for each section (as you’ve mentioned with Articles vs Editorials). Perhaps what we need is a plugin with settings that allows you to toggle which metadata is required?

This is a good idea. It can be done with the current setup, as we’ve done with the DOI. But takes a tiny bit more coding to do. Maybe the best approach is for us to have settings so that each requirement can be toggled between a requirement and a warning…

Hi @NateWr,

It’s definitely possible. Exactly the kind of thing these checks were meant for. Happy to help guide you on how it would be done.

Thanks! It will take some time until we get there, but I might have some questions once I start making my own checks.

Does the Quick Submit plugin let you publish immediately as you submit?

If the submission is added to an issue which is already published, then yes, the submission will be published as well.
I’ll keep that in mind!

Perhaps what we need is a plugin with settings that allows you to toggle which metadata is required?

But you can already decide which metadata fields are required in 3.1.2 for every journal. Has this feature been removed with the checks?

Kind regards
Daniela

But you can already decide which metadata fields are required in 3.1.2 for every journal. Has this feature been removed with the checks?

You can require an author to provide keywords before their submission is accepted. But there’s nothing to prevent these from being removed by an author, or to prevent a submission from being published without them.

Seems like a sensible extension of the existing metadata settings. My only concern is when people want metadata, like keywords, to be required in some sections but not others.

This looks great, Nate and here’s to an ORCID check, but maybe it needs to be part of a similar sort of “pre-acceptance check” for authors (“Dear author, we’re happy to accept this paper once you go into the journal site and complete the following…”), which might include ORCID, as well as Conflict of Interest statements, metadata completion (some journals request authors to provide translated abstracts etc.), reference hyperlinks (perhaps configurable as part of setup). I realize that these could be part of a pre-submission check (which we have as a checklist), but I can see the case for going easy on requirements at that stage so as not to discourage submissions, only to come back when the incentive is much higher.

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