Generic standard licensing

Subject: Generic standard licensing
From: Barbara Schleihagen (
Date: to 08 heinä  1999 - 11:41:41 EEST

Originally put on the
For your information.
Regards, Barbara Schleihagen

Generic standard licensing: at last, model license agreements for use by
the journal community

John Cox Associates announces the development of a suite of generic
standard licenses for electronic journals. They have been developed by
John Cox, of John Cox Associates, an international publishing consultancy
specializing in licensing and content management. The licenses have been
in close consultation with five leading journal subscription agents:
Blackwell, Dawson, EBSCO, Harrassowitz and Swets. They have generously
sponsored the project in the interests of the serials community.

Four standard license agreements have been developed, in consultation with
publishers and librarians as well as the agents. There are two academic
licenses, one for individual universities and one for consortia, a public
library license, and one for corporate and other special libraries.

The initial license development will be completed by the end of July. The
model licenses will be mounted on a Website upon completion of the project,
for use by publishers, subscription agents and libraries.

They do not re-invent what has already been developed. They are:

 enhancements of existing work;
 international in applicability;
 sufficiently flexible to account for the varying needs of
different types of customer;
 comprehensive - clauses can be selected to compile licenses
appropriate to each situation;
 the result of discussion between experienced librarians,
publishers and the major subscription agents.

“License negotiation represents a considerable administrative burden to
both publishers and librarians. Both sections of the community are crying
out for rationalization and harmonization of the many forms of words used
to implement license transactions”, said John Cox.

Trisha Davis, Head of Serials and Electronic Resources at The Ohio State
University Libraries, is enthusiastic: “I know from experience that
librarians will eagerly welcome standardized licenses that are clearly
written, flexible, and succinct. Both publishers and librarians alike
constantly search for methods to reduce the enormous (and expensive!)
workload that licensing requires. It's time for all of us to focus more of
our resources on the product development and the needs of our end users.”

Bev Bruce, Director, Academic Customer Relations at MCB UP and one of the
participating publishers, said: “Many publishers have already developed
their own licenses. But standard documentation will improve the way we
operate immeasurably, and will enable us to concentrate on negotiating the
substance of licenses – price and terms of use – rather than fretting over
the wording.”

John Cox was emphatic: “Licenses should be seen as tools to be used to help
both publishers and librarians. These standard licenses contain wording
for most eventualities. They do not prescribe solutions to the many
differences that arise in negotiation – that would be against anti-trust
and competition law – but they contain the wording necessary to express
most of the likely outcomes.”

For further information, contact:

John Cox
Tel: +44 (0) 1327 857908
Fax: +44 (0) 1327 858564

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