Interest - what it means and how to interpret it

Modified on Mon, 15 May 2023 at 11:02 AM

Statistics obtained from publishers use many different metrics, such as “Items displayed during search”, “Items retrieved by the user”, etc. Without knowing exactly how each of these metrics is defined (either in the COUNTER standard or outside of it for custom data), it is sometimes difficult for normal users to understand the presented statistics.

In order to simplify this and give users one specific measurement of how much each e-resource is used, we devised the concept of interest. This one value should make it possible to more easily compare values between different titles, platform and also time periods. It should also enable easier comparison between data obtained using different version of COUNTER.

Because different platforms focus on different types of services, the definition of interest cannot be the same. Some platforms offer searching capabilities, some offer full texts of journal articles or access to whole electronic books. In order to make it possible to distinguish between these cases, CELUS uses more than one interest type.

Interest types

When creating CELUS, we saw two basic types of services that e-resource platforms offer - access to full texts and database searching. Therefore we made it possible to use different types of interest for these services and created the Full text and Search interest types. Thus it is possible to easily distinguish between types of platforms and in case a platform offers both types of services (e.g. EBSCO) compare the two types of interest. In version 5.4.0, we introduced another type of interest - Multimedia, which allows users to easily access the number of usage of multimedia resources (videos, sound, images, etc.)

Another important aspect of interest is that users express it both when they successfully access the e-resource and when they are denied access. In order to incorporate this into CELUS in a way that would not cause confusion (as could happen if the two types of interest were simply mixed together), we also created a corresponding types of interest called Denial - full text, Denial - search and Denial - multimedia These represent denial data related to the previously mentioned types of interest which are used only for successful access to a resource.

For platforms that fall outside of the scope of full text, search and multimediathere is also the Other type of interest used in specific cases.

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