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Comment #00710 - proposal from JATS4R to make 'pub-date' optional in Blue DTD - z39_96-2015.pdf (revision #1)

Comment 710
Addressed (Unresolved)
ANSI/NISO Z39.96-2015, JATS: Journal Article Tag Suite, version 1.1 (Revision 1)
Comment Submitted by
Tom Mowlam
2016-12-15 11:22:09


<pub-date> is required in <article-meta> in the Blue DTD (https://jats.nlm.nih.gov/publishing/tag-library/1.1/element/pub-date.html) ? and must have non-empty tags in the PMC style checker ? this causes a couple of problems.


A: Some publishers post the articles online, but do not assign the publication date until later, and they therefore include empty <pub-date> tags in order to pass DTD validation (example: Frontiers).

B: Many publishers, during the production of XML, do not know what the publication date will be, but need to include the tags in order to pass DTD validation ? some of these publishers also require that the XML is checked against the PMC style checker (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/tools/stylechecker/) which does not allow empty <pub-date> tags, therefore they must include dummy dates, which are replaced later with the real dates just before publication (example: Ubiquity Press).

C: This will be a requirement for a JATS4R recommendation and JATS4R is colour neutral


Submitter Proposed Solution


A possible workaround to this validation issue would be to move from Blue to Green - but, as the publishers want to maintain fairly well-defined content, they would need to sub-set the Green DTD and/or create additional validation through tools like schematron - this would add significant cost. Also there publishing tools available based around Blue, which may be unusable under Green (for example: https://github.com/ncbi/JATSPreviewStylesheets ).


The request is that the <pub-date> be changed from ?required? to ?optional? in the blue DTD, to facilitate publishers who post articles online without setting publication dates, and to simplify production of JATS XML (the PMC style checker may need to be updated too).

Ms. B. Tommie Usdin
2017-08-31 08:28:25

We will add a new element <date-not-available> for use in article metadata. In both Blue and Green, where <pub-date> is used now, we can either use a <pub-date> or a <date-not-available> element, but there must be at least one of these.