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11.0 Extending the Code of Practice

COUNTER recognises that some content providers may want to provide customized versions of COUNTER reports to address reporting needs specific to their platform and content. This section describes a method of extending the Code of Practice that avoids creating conflicting custom implementations between content providers.

11.1 Platform as a Namespace

Content providers and other organizations providing COUNTER reports wishing to create custom reports or introduce custom elements or element-values can do so by using their platform identifier (platform ID) as a namespace. For example, if EBSCO wanted to create a customized version of the “Journal Requests (Excluding OA_Gold)” Standard View for their link resolver product that includes a new Metric_Type for counting link-outs, they could do this by naming the report “ebscohost:TR_J1” and creating a new Metric_Type of “ebscohost:Total_Linkouts”.

The namespace MUST only contain ASCII characters (a–z, A–Z, 0–9). No spaces or punctuation is allowed.

COUNTER will assign the platform ID when adding the platform to their Registry of Compliance (content providers can suggest a value to be used for their platform ID). Other organizations providing COUNTER reports, such as consortia or ERM providers, may contact COUNTER to register a namespace if they desire to create extensions and customizations. COUNTER will maintain a list of approved namespaces.

11.2 Creating Customized COUNTER Reports

Customized versions of COUNTER reports can be created as long as the general layout for COUNTER reports is followed. New reports MUST be given an identifier and a name in the format of {namespace}:{report ID} and {namespace}:{report name}. An example of a custom report could be:

Report_ID Report_Name
ebscohost:LR1 ebscohost:Link Out Report 1

11.3 Creating New Elements/Columns Headings

New elements/column headings can be added to the Master Reports (PR, DR, TR, IR). The element name MUST take the form of {namespace}:{element name}. An example of a custom elements/column heading could be: isi:Impact_Factor

11.4 Creating New Values for Enumerated Elements and Attributes

Several report elements and attributes in COUNTER reports include a controlled list of possible values. On occasion, a content provider may want to introduce additional values that better reflects their content and platform. The element value lists can be extended by including additional values in the form of {namespace}:{element value}. An example of a custom Metric_Type could be ebscohost:Total_Linkouts. The following is the list of elements that can be extended in this manner:

  • Data_Type
  • Section_Type
  • Access_Type
  • Access_Method
  • Metric_Type

Note that values for identifier fields (Institution_ID, Publisher_ID, etc.) MUST also include the namespace for these identifiers. For proprietary identifiers that are platform-specific, the platform ID should be used as the namespace.

11.5 Reserved Values Available for Extending Reports

This Code of Practice recognizes that there are some common extensions that content providers might want to include in Master Reports or when creating custom reports; therefore, the following element names and element values have been reserved for this common use:

Reserved Name Description Use-case
Customer_ID An element/column heading for the body of the report. When a report contains usage for multiple organizations.
Institution_Name An element/column heading for the body of the report. When a report contains usage for multiple organizations.
Format An element name used to identify the format of the content. Reserved Values include:

  • HTML
  • PDF
  • Other
By tracking the format, the content provider can use R5 usage logs to generate R4 usage reports during the transition period.

11.6 Restrictions in Using Customized Elements and Values

Report extensions can be used in custom reports as well as in Master Reports. If extensions are introduced to a Master Report, it MUST be possible for a user to exclude extended elements and values from the report if desired.

Extensions MUST NOT be used with Standard Views.

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