The Code of Practice for Research Data Usage Metrics standardizes the generation and distribution of usage metrics for research data, enabling for the first time the consistent and credible reporting of research data usage.
COUNTER welcomes input and feedback from the community on this first iteration, so that it can be further developed and refined.
A downloadable PDF is now available in the download section below.
Aligned as much as possible with the COUNTER Code of Practice Release 5 glossary.
|Access_Method||A COUNTER attribute indicating whether the usage related to investigations and requests was generated by a human user browsing and searching a website (Regular) or by a computer (Machine).|
|Collection||A curated collection of metadata about content items.|
|Component||A uniquely identifiable constituent part of a content item composed of more than one file (digital object).|
|Content item||A generic term describing a unit of content accessed by a user of a content host. Typical content items include articles, books, chapters, datasets, multimedia, etc.|
|Content provider||An organization whose function is to commission, create, collect, validate, host, distribute, and trade information in electronic form.|
|Creator(s)||The person/people who wrote/created the datasets whose usage is being reported-|
|Data repository||A content provider that provides access to research data.|
|Data type||The field identifying type of content. The Code of Practice for Research Data Usage Metrics only recognizes the Data type Dataset.|
|Dataset||An aggregation of data, published or curated by a single agent, and available for access or download in one or more formats, with accompanying metadata. Other term: data package.|
|Description||A short description of a dataset. Accessing the description falls into the usage category of Investigations.|
|DOI (digital object identifier)||The digital object identifier is a means of identifying a piece of intellectual property (a creation) on a digital network, irrespective of its current location (IDF).|
|Double-click||A repeated click or repeated access to the same resource by the same user within a period of 30 seconds. COUNTER requires that double-clicks must be counted as a single click.|
|Host types||A categorization of Content Providers used by COUNTER. The Code of Practice for Research Data Usage Metrics uses the following host types:
● Data Repository
|Internet robot, crawler, spider||An identifiable, automated program or script that visits websites and systematically retrieves information from them, often to provide indexes for search engines rather than for research. Not all programs or scripts are classified as robots.|
|Investigation||A category of COUNTER metric types that represent a user accessing information related to a dataset (i.e. a description or detailed descriptive metadata) or the content of the dataset itself.|
|Log file analysis||A method of collecting usage data in which the web server records all of its transactions.|
|Machine||A category of COUNTER Metric Types that represents a machine accessing content, e.g. a script written by a researcher. This does not include robots, crawlers and spiders.|
|Master reports||Reports that contain additional filters and breakdowns beyond those included in the standard COUNTER reports.|
|Metadata||A series of textual elements that describes a content item but does not include the item itself. For example, metadata for a dataset would typically include publisher, a list of names and affiliations of the creators, the title and description, and keywords or other subject classifications.|
|Metric types, Metric_Type||An attribute of COUNTER usage that identifies the nature of the usage activity.|
|ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID)||An international standard identifier for individuals (i.e. authors) to use with their name as they engage in research, scholarship, and innovation activities.|
|Persistent Identifier (PID)||Globally unique identifier and associated metadata for research data, or other entities (articles, researchers, scholarly institutions) relevant in scholarly communication.|
|Platform||An interface from an aggregator, publisher, or other online service that delivers the content to the user and that counts and provides the COUNTER usage reports.|
|Provider ID||A unique identifier for a Content Provider and used by discovery services and other content sites to track usage for content items provided by that provider.|
|Publication date, Publication_Date||An optional field in COUNTER item reports and Provider Discovery Reports. The date of release by the publisher to customers of a content item.|
|Publisher||An organization whose function is to commission, create, collect, validate, host, distribute and trade information online and/or in printed form.|
|Regular||A COUNTER Access_Method. Indicates that usage was generated by a human user browsing/searching a website, rather than by a computer.|
|Reporting period, Reporting_Period||The total time period covered in a usage report.|
|Request||A category of COUNTER Metric Types that represents a user accessing the dataset content.|
|Session||A successful request of an online service. A single user connects to the service or database and ends by terminating activity that is either explicit (by leaving the service through exit or logout) or implicit (timeout due to user inactivity). (NISO).|
|SUSHI||An international standard (Z39-93) that describes a method for automating the harvesting of reports. Research Data SUSHI API Specification is an implementation of this standard for harvesting Code of Practice for Research Data Usage Metrics reports.|
|Total_Dataset_Investigations||A COUNTER Metric_Type that represents the number of times users accessed the content of a dataset, or information describing that dataset (i.e. metadata).|
|Total_Dataset_Requests||A COUNTER Metric_Type that represents the number of times users requested the content of a dataset. Requests may take the form of viewing, downloading, or emailing the dataset provided such actions can be tracked by the content provider’s server.|
|Transactions||A usage event.|
|Unique_Dataset_Investigations||A COUNTER Metric Type that represents the number of unique “Datasets” investigated in a user-session.|
|Unique_Dataset_Requests||A COUNTER Metric Type that represents the number of unique datasets requested in a user-session.|
|User||A person who accesses the online resource.|
|User agent||An identifier that is part of the HTTP/S protocol that identifies the software (i.e. browser) being used to access the site. May be used by robots to identify themselves.|
|Version||Multiple versions of a dataset are defined by significant changes to the content and/or metadata, associated with changes in one or more components.|
|Year of publication||Calendar year in which a dataset is published.|
This Code of Practice foris implemented using the following convention:
The keywords “MUST”, “MUST NOT”, “REQUIRED”, “RECOMMENDED”, and “OPTIONAL” in this document are to be interpreted as described in RFC 2119 (“RFC 2119: Key words for use in RFCs to Indicate Requirement Levels,” 1997).
Note that the force of these words is modified by the requirement level of the document in which they are used.
Content providers implementing the Code of Practice forUsage Metrics who feel they have a valid disagreement with a requirement of the code are requested to contact the authors and ask for clarification on interpretation of the code.
Terms appearing in italics represent variables that will be replaced with appropriate values at implementation time, for example “Error_Number : Error_Description” might resolve to “3040 : Partial Usage Available”.