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We are delighted that JSTOR is one of the first content providers to successfully pass a COUNTER Release 5 Audit. This means that JSTOR is full COUNTER compliant!

Peter Vlahakis is the Senior Product Manager at ITHAKA and he led the JSTOR implementation of Release 5. We asked him to tell us more about JSTOR and why COUNTER compliance is important. Finally, we asked if he had any tips to share with other content providers.


Our mini-interview with Peter Vlahakis

Congratulations on being one of the first to pass a COUNTER Release 5 audit. Can you please tell us about JSTOR and the content that you provide?

Peter: Thank you! JSTOR provides access to more than 12 million academic journal articles, books, and primary sources in 75 disciplines. We help researchers explore a wide range of scholarly content through a powerful research and teaching platform. JSTOR also collaborates with the academic community to help libraries connect students and faculty to vital content while lowering costs and increasing shelf space, provide independent researchers with free and low-cost access to scholarship, and help publishers reach new audiences and preserve their content for future generations.


Why is compliance with Release 5 important to JSTOR and to your customers?

Peter: JSTOR has always been committed to providing our participating publishers and institutions with industry-standard, accurate usage data to help them understand the value that their researches are discovering on our platform, and identify new opportunities to provide important access to scholarly content.

Release 5 is an important iteration on the COUNTER standard for JSTOR because it provides an improved framework for which we can better describe usage happening across a variety of content types on the JSTOR platform. JSTOR committed to releasing COUNTER R5 reports with an audit-certification because we recognize the importance libraries place on having accurate usage data from their electronic resource providers.  We also believe that, having been one of the first to release COUNTER R5 reports and pass an independent audit, we are in a position to partner with libraries and publishers in helping them adopt the new standard and comply with their reporting needs and obligations.


Can you tell us about your preparations for the COUNTER audit, and share any tips for other publishers preparing for their audit?

Peter: Preparing for and implementing COUNTER Release 5 was a significant investment for us. We also set an ambitious goal of passing the required independent audit before releasing R5 reports so that we could ensure the highest quality usage data and report formats from the beginning. To prepare for this undertaking, we spent a significant amount of time clearly documenting our interpretation of the new Release and working with Project COUNTER to verify this interpretation. This proved to be paramount towards our success, as we were able to make adjustments and clarify questions early on in development.

Another goal of JSTOR’s R5 release was to offer excellent support and transparency into our implementation for libraries and publishers. To do this, we have clearly documented how the JSTOR platform translates to Release 5 metrics for everyone to see, and took great care in explaining the reports we offer, what’s in them, and what the transition timeline looks like from R4 to R5 for JSTOR reporting.

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