Ok I tried to read the NLM Tech Bull, New PubModel for PubMed Citations, but it was so packed full of jargon that my brain started to hurt. I read it through several times then asked our cataloger what she understood of it.
This is what I was able to piece together. It is for online only journals and they will have two dates, the eCollection and the published date. The eCollection date refers to when the article was deposited in PMC.
I have several thoughts…none of them pleasant.
First, it is pretty bad when the technical bulletin is confusing to the very readers it aims to inform. I am not the only one who thinks it was confusing. Check out these responses to my quick question on Twitter.
Second, isn’t the term Electronic eCollection kind of redundant?
Finally, Does this solve the epub ahead of print mess or just add to the confusion? To me it seems to add to the confusion. Not only do we have 2 different possible “publication” dates but their example article “was published online on January 25, 2013, yet was included in the Volume 3, 2012 collection as deposited in PMC.” Does anybody find that absolutely confusing?! What is the correct citation for authors to use?! When was it really published? Why is PMC not listing it when it was actually published by the journal on January 25, 2013!?
How can I explain this to doctors when I can’t understand it and why it is being done? Please somebody comment because I befuddled.