SOLVED! Request for modification of translator for MDPI journals

edited January 25, 2022
Please consider modifying the translator(s) for all MDPI journals to preference the DOI rather than their header embedded metadata.

The existing translator brings in MDPI's use of exotic html entities for what could instead be simple characters in the article titles, abstracts, and occasionally author names.

Another problem for me is that the current translator doesn't capture the journal ISSN while the DOI import via the Magic Wand does.

For example:


I can provide further examples if it will help to weigh your decision in my favor.
  • Using HTML entities isn't necessary but it's also not the problem — they're just double-encoding them:

    <meta name="title" content="Smart Sirens&amp;mdash;Civil Protection in Rural Areas">

    The translator could correct for this, but really they should just fix it. There's a good chance they're not aware of it and it would be a trivial fix.

    The ISSN can be added to the translator easily. It's not a reason to use DOI lookup.

    We could take the position that more translators should just detect a DOI and then look up its metadata, but that's not what we generally do, and it would make saves slower and create more load on the metadata services. Publisher sites also often have both original and updated metadata sooner.

    If you want to use the DOI translator, you can just select that from the save button context menu.

  • (In fact, there's an open issue from a few weeks ago to add the ISSN to the MDPI translator.)
  • @DWL-SDCA do you have an example for an author/creator with escaped HTML in it?
  • I'll give an example the next time I encounter one.
  • Translator is now fixed to include ISSN and work around the double-encoded entities. Your Zotero Connector should auto-update within 24 hours, or you can update manually by clicking Update Translators in the Advanced pane of the Zotero Connector preferences.
  • Yes! Thanks to everyone involved.
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