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Is this site well known?

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I have only been reading research papers online for a couple of years now. (And none before that anywhere else). The pay walls were getting to be a constant disappointment. See something promising and then bang! Pay wall. I found a site called Academia.edu with what looks like endless papers to read for free. I've read several geology related papers so far and they were wonderful, over my level of understanding in too many instances, but really good. They are by university faculty, the one I read tonight is an Emeritus.

 

Has anyone used them as a source or published something through them?

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That is one of the benefits of going to University, you have access to countless articles through their website. Learning is a lot of fun

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There is a tremendous amount of content on the internet free of charge. The problem is it is not easily discoverable, nor is it in a format that is pleasant to use. As much as many people hate publishers, it is that ease of access and the polished finished product that you have to pay for. Thus the paywalls.

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The price of a library card will often get you past some paywalls.

 

My complaint with paywalls is that the prices are too high and the memberships too disconnected from each other. There's a commercial opportunity there for somebody - I'd happily drop the price of a normal magazine subscription into some sort of a book club model online site that carried the bestsellers and editor's choices of scientific papers, or access to a compendium of related issue publications rather than stuff related by shared publishing company. Meanwhile, when I'm searching on a topic these days, I can easily hit a half dozen separate paywalls in a half an hour, and none of them token payments - serious money here, for sites I may never want again but on issues I certainly will search again.

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Thanks to all of you. And sorry about that lousy title. That Academia.edu is to my limited opinion a really great resource. Has anyone else tried them.

The team that operates it look like some kind of silicon valley start up. I will check out that one you posted, thanks StringJunky.

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ResearchGate hosts some non-peer-reviewed or green open-access articles.

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I've been using Academia.edu for a while now and know that many of my research-keen friends also use it, and often papers that I look for happen to have been posted there, so I am guessing it's pretty well known. However, I certainly don't find most papers I read via their website; I think that googling the paywalled papers' titles or a set of relevant keywords followed by the search modifier inurl:.pdf yields the most results.

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I've been using Academia.edu for a while now and know that many of my research-keen friends also use it, and often papers that I look for happen to have been posted there, so I am guessing it's pretty well known. However, I certainly don't find most papers I read via their website; I think that googling the paywalled papers' titles or a set of relevant keywords followed by the search modifier inurl:.pdf yields the most results.

Yes, just because a paper is paywalled at one site doesn't mean that it is elsewhere. I can more often than not find free access by copy/pasting the title in Google.

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I've been using Academia.edu for a while now and know that many of my research-keen friends also use it, and often papers that I look for happen to have been posted there, so I am guessing it's pretty well known. However, I certainly don't find most papers I read via their website; I think that googling the paywalled papers' titles or a set of relevant keywords followed by the search modifier inurl:.pdf yields the most results.

 

 

Yes, just because a paper is paywalled at one site doesn't mean that it is elsewhere. I can more often than not find free access by copy/pasting the title in Google.

 

Thanks guys, when I first started reading these things I tried what you're saying and usually found it for free on the first page or the next one, but then recently when I tried the same technique I struck out every time. I wasn't thinking the publishing time had something to do with it. This last time the material I was seeking was probably much newer and I wasn't accounting for that. I'm just pleased to know the Academia.edu is good quality. The part I like about it is the authors have really good profile pages. You can see how many members are following their work and then in turn check all of their profiles. It builds a substantial amount of confidence in their work when there are so many PhD's reading each others work. It will say on the page who else has read it and who is following that author.

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There is Mendeley.com as well - which whilst it is only really a reference manager does have some very useful contact making facilities and the ability to see what other academics in a similar field are working upon

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