Tracking DOIs which are used in citations

Hi there, here are some stories which I am keen to implement

  1. As the site owner for, I re-publish open documents and I make them DOIs back to my site. When someone clicks on such a DOI I want to know where they did this. I want to know this so that I can know whether the DOI was clicked in an important report. Then I can tell people how influential my services is. I would like it to work like Urchin Traffic Management.
  2. As the site owner of Story 1, I want to know that a citation including a DOI I made was copied versus the citation having been made off my site. That is, I would like the DOI to get appended a unique identifier each time a fresh citation of the same resource is taken. The I can tell people how authors come to my site to cite stuff. I would like to append the DOI with an argument like ?tracker=123456

I hope these are clear and not too vain! We benefit a lot from UTM and wonder why DOI’s can’t carry UTMs, for example. I am aware of the Handle and DUL specifications but these seem to provide a lot of functionality we don’t need, and they seem to serve the rights holder, not the re-publisher.

Kind regards


the service is tracking DOI resolutions (redirecting a request for a DOI to the URL registered in the service). For a subset of resolutions (depending on a number of factors including http/https) the referer is captured in the logs. This information is currently not available to end users and is buried deep in the logs, but is generally available. You can of course also track referers at the site hosting the DOIs.

I am not sure you will generate enough interest in your second story that this is implemented by one of the DOI service providers. For many people there is already too much tracking going on on the web, myself included.

Thank you Martin - I’ll keep that in mind.
Our tracking would be the bibliography that had the citation in it only, not the user or any person’s identity.

I share your concern about personal tracking.

Best regards

Craig Burton