April 22, 2018

The Top-Cited Recent Sources for Current Cites

I wear a lot of hats — some might say too many and they would not be far off. But be that as it may, one of the hats I wear is the Editor of Current Cites. Current Cites is a monthly current awareness newsletter that we (the Cites team, a set of volunteer reviewers) have published every single month since August 1990.

Let’s put this into perspective for a moment. Current Cites had been published for nearly three years before I took a leave of absence for the birth of my twin daughters. Those girls are now 20 years old and in college.

So it occurred to me that it might be interesting to see which publications we here at Current Cites have leaned on the most for the best of the best in the library and information technology literature. Doing this was trivial, since for the last eleven years we have used a web-based input form I created that outputs an XML file for each citation. Those citations are then rendered by an XLST stylesheet into the HTML issue that is published on the web. Therefore, extracting the periodical sources of the articles was simple.

Here, then, are our top ten most cited sources (well, top 14 since we had some ties) over the past 11 years:

  1. First Monday
  2. D-Lib Magazine
  3. Library Journal
  4. Computers in Libraries
  5. Code4Lib Journal
  6. Ariadne
  7. EDUCAUSE Review
  8. RLG DigiNews
  9. Communications of the ACM, Journal of Academic Librarianship, Library Hi Tech
  10. Library Technology Reports, Online, SPARC Open Access Newsletter

Unfortunately, RLG DigiNews is no longer published, so it will eventually drop off the list. And the Code4lib Journal, which began publishing in 2007, quickly joined the top ten.

Roy Tennant About Roy Tennant

Roy Tennant is a Senior Program Officer for OCLC Research. He is the owner of the Web4Lib and XML4Lib electronic discussions, and the creator and editor of Current Cites, a current awareness newsletter published every month since 1990. His books include "Technology in Libraries: Essays in Honor of Anne Grodzins Lipow" (2008), "Managing the Digital Library" (2004), "XML in Libraries" (2002), "Practical HTML: A Self-Paced Tutorial" (1996), and "Crossing the Internet Threshold: An Instructional Handbook" (1993). Roy wrote a monthly column on digital libraries for Library Journal for a decade and has written numerous articles in other professional journals. In 2003, he received the American Library Association's LITA/Library Hi Tech Award for Excellence in Communication for Continuing Education. Follow him on Twitter @rtennant.


  1. Chris Rusbridge says:

    Roy, I was glad to see Ariadne on your list, but also RLG Diginews. I was very ashamed that when RLG merged with OCLC (a decision I agreed with and was partly responsible for, as a RLG Board member), OCLC abandoned the RLG web site without proper redirects, meaning that all previous URL-based citations failed (pointing to a search page that didn’t work). Diginews was there, but it was REALLY hard to find. I had a longish discussion with Lorcan aboit this.

    Anyway, I was glad that I could click right through to RLG Diginews from your post. I was still disappointed when I clicked on the “issues index” to be taken to a weird page on the OCLC archive site. Again, I think the issue index was there, but hard to find.

    Any chance of persuading OCLC to make RLG Diginews properly available, preferably redirected from the original URLs that still exist in so many citations?