[Irtalk] PLOS ONE: The Number of Scholarly Documents on the Public Web

Hilton Gibson hilton.gibson at gmail.com
Wed May 14 09:53:39 SAST 2014

The number of scholarly documents available on the web is estimated using
capture/recapture methods by studying the coverage of two major academic
search engines: Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic Search. Our estimates
show that at least 114 million English-language scholarly documents are
accessible on the web, of which Google Scholar has nearly 100 million. *Of
these, we estimate that at least 27 million (24%) are freely
available*since they do not require a subscription or payment of any


*I wonder how much of the remaining 76% is publicly funded and "rented" by
commercial publishers?*
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