Using online academic journal resource JSTOR -- a less-than-fond memory of my university days -- has just become a little easier for those without pockets deep enough for a subscription, as the organisation now allows a certain amount of free access.
JSTOR announced this week that the "Register & Read" program will offer free accounts to those who sign up, granting a limited amount of access to its massive collection of journals, books and academic papers. However, members will only be able to read three papers every two weeks, and the collection available to browse is restricted to 1,200 journals from 700 publishers.
The organisation says that there are currently over 4.5 million articles available in this subsection of the library. Roughly 40 percent of the articles available can be downloaded for a fee.
In exchange for this experimental free access, users must enter personal details including your email, area of study and institution. This data will then be shared with JSTOR's partners in order to give the firm an idea of what people are reading.
Kate Duff, director of strategic partnerships and analytics for the Journals Division of The University of Chicago Press commented:
'We were very pleased to be part of the test period and with the resulting interest shown in the 5 of our journals that took part. All our journals were used and ranged in subjects from biology to economics and sociology. It’s exciting to now have the opportunity to extend access to our entire journals portfolio through this important new initiative."
This project is being launched on the back of JSTOR's "Early Journal Content" scheme, where over 150,000 people registered across a 10-month period to read 76 journals of copyright-free content for free.