New ways of doing business

Subject: New ways of doing business
From: Emanuella Giavarra (
Date: ke 14 elo    1996 - 19:36:46 EEST

Dear ecup-list subscribers,

Last week I was invited to give a paper on Copyright and the
Information Age at the Ticer Summer School on the Digital Library
in Tilburg, the Netherlands.

Just before I had to give my paper, the following statement was
made by the representative of Elesevier Science in his paper on
"The changing role of the publisher".

If publishers will continue to deal with libraries, will there be no
change (in the electronic environment, red)? The way we do
business will change. Increasingly there will be a contractual
relationship which documents our respective roles and
responsibilities. Information is provided under licence. This is not
something which necessarily either libraries or publishers like. It's
expensive, time consuming and more than occasionally aggrevating.
From the pulisher's side, it is much more expensive to sell under
licence than to sell in the traditional way. Licenses require much
more personal attention and negotiation. From the library's side, the
same irritation prevail. Why, then, the need for a licence?

One answer is to talk about the easy replication of electronic files
and the ease of access from anywhere in the world. Therefore, the
desire on the part of the publisher --and on the library's part-- to
define what is the authorized user community and what uses can be
made of the material by that community. Underlying this is, however,
a second and directly related need and that is to make a transition
from pricing systems of the traditional paper product to pricing
systems for networked electronic journals.

The often preferred model by libraries is to have heavily used
publications available under a subscription and less-fequently used
titles available on some type of payment per use/document delivery
model. For publishers, this is not an easy transaction. If you have
multiple paper subscriptions on a campus - a particular concern for
society publishers who have a large number of member subscriptions
- there is no one, obvious pricing model. Therefore, we are in a
stage when we must work by trail and error and by discussion with
our library partners to develop new models which work for both

Especially the last sentence I thought is very positive.

Another positive signal from the publishing world was heard at the
at the 25th Congress of the International Publishers Association in
Barcelona from 22 to 26 April 1996

 IPA member associations asked to encourages their members to
explore pilot projects with librarians to use the networked
environment for delivery and services in order to achieve common
goals of providing copyright information to scholars, researchers and
the public at large.

These are both positive developments. Does anybody on the list had
recently negative experiences in trying to get publishers to
cooperated concerning the use of electronic information. A positive
experience is of course also welcome. Do you think that the climate
is changing. Last year I heard overall more negative experiences in
trying to cooperate with publishers than positive ones. I would also
be very interested to hear if anybody of this list has recently started a
pilot project with publishers.

Best wishes,
Emanuella Giavarra

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