8.2 REPORT OF MEETING HELD AUGUST 24, 1989, PARIS, FRANCE, TO DISCUSS ISSUES RELATED TO SERIALS PRICING, Karen Muller
8.3 CHARLESTON CONFERENCE: NOVEMBER 9-11, 1989
8.4 A LIGHTHEARTED LOOK AT ALA: PART 2, Ken Kirkland
8.5 REPORT ON OTHER ALA MEETINGS, Christian Boissonnas
8.6 NEW AWARD? Patricia Rice
8.7 HAMAKER'S HAYMAKERS, Chuck Hamaker
8.8 SERIALS CANCELLED AT NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF STANDARDS AND TECHNOLOGY, Material from Patricia Berger
"You've created a monster!" cried Karen Muller, Executive Director of ALCTS/LAMA. Karen's office is responsible for mailing the paper edition of the NEWSLETTER ON SERIALS PRICING ISSUES, including filling claims and back orders. She manages both ALA divisions, neither of which has a second-in-command at the moment, and the popularity of the newsletter demands more staff time and more money than are available. For these reasons, we are forced to impose a charge on back issues of the paper edition only, effective October 1, 1989: $5.00 per issue, per copy, prepaid.
As the inevitable subscription price (paper edition only) looms in January, we hope all those subscribers will consider changing to an electronic edition. Some of you are in libraries where other persons receive the BITNET or DataLinx edition. If you don't use e-mail yourself, will you investigate getting a paper printout from the electronic edition subscriber? And BITNET/ DataLinx subscribers, please feel free to forward or otherwise share your copies with staff members and others who are concerned about serials prices.
We have finally succeeded in getting the newsletter on ALANET. Beginning with no. 7 it is available to all ALANET subscribers.
Judging by your continued response and support, the monster we have created is a beneficial monster -- as long as it's electronic.
8.2 REPORT OF MEETING HELD AUGUST 24, 1989, PARIS, FRANCE, TO DISCUSS ISSUES RELATED TO SERIALS PRICING
Karen Muller, Executive Director, Association of Library Collections and Technical Services/Library Administration and Management Association, BITNET U19466@UICVM.
In attendance: Patricia W. Berger, National Institute of Standards and Technology and ALA President (presiding); Judy McDermott, Library of Congress; Rolf Griebel, Universitatsbibliothek, Erlangen; Ulrich Montag, Bayerische Staatsbibliothek, Munchen; Herman Koestler, Zentralbibliothek, Zurich; Duane Webster, Association of Research Libraries; Sharon Hogan, Louisiana State University Library; Karen Muller, American Library Association; Thomas J. Galvin, American Library Association; Patricia Molholt, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy NY.
Following introductions, Herr Montag summarized recent activities of the IFLA Section on Acquisition and Exchange in the area of pricing concerns. Preliminary results of the work had been presented during the Section's open meeting on August 22, with the general finding that the budgets of most libraries in Germany and English-speaking countries are not responding to price increases.
Mrs. Berger reviewed the documents that had been distributed and the reasons the meeting had been arranged. Henry H. Barschall, a retired professor of physics at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, had published an article ("The Cost-Effectiveness of Physics Journals") in PHYSICS TODAY, a journal of the American Institute of Physics. The article is the summary of a more detailed study published in the BULLETIN OF THE AMERICAN INSTITUTE OF PHYSICS. The article includes analysis of both commercially published journals, such as those published by Gordon & Breach, and society publications, including those of the American Institute of Physics. Because Dr. Barschall is on the publications board of the American Institute of Physics and the article compares publications, Gordon & Breach believes that it constitutes "comparative advertising" and may constitute "trade libel" under the laws of West Germany, Switzerland, and other European countries. Gordon & Breach have filed suits in West Germany, and are threatening suits in the U.S., Switzerland, Japan, and France.
According to correspondence shared with the American Library Association, Gordon & Breach charge that there are methodological deficiencies inherent in the study and that the study is biased against commercial firms. The American Institute of Physics had offered Gordon & Breach the opportunity to publish criticisms, but Gordon & Breach had not done so. It was reported that American librarians doing research in the same area had been threatened by Gordon & Breach.
Herr Montag reported that librarians in Germany have been conducting studies analyzing price increases and are aware of the Barschall study. However, he was not aware of the lawsuits and, with Herr Griebel, stressed that information about which court the suits have been filed in and the actual texts of the filings will be important. It is necessary to know the exact grounds for the suits in order to understand how to react.
Mr. Webster reported that the lawyers for the American Institute of Physics are Covington and Burling, in Washington DC, with Richard Meserve as the lead attorney on the case. At this point the law firm believes that publicity on the matter could be detrimental, but is seeking sources for expert witnesses, particularly in the countries where suits have been filed, or will be filed, to be called in as the case develops.
Although the consensus was that the suit challenged values of intellectual discourse, no concerted action should be undertaken at this time. The various groups represented would continue gathering information. Herr Koestler would seek the text of the filing for any Swiss suit, and Herr Montag would seek the text of the filing for the West German suit; both would continue to gather information in their respective countries. The American Library Association, through the joint Association for Library Collections & Technical Services/Library Administration and Management Association (ALCTS/LAMA) office, would coordinate information in the United States. It was agreed that the Society for Scholarly Publishing should also be included in further discussions.
Dr. Galvin noted that the September 1989 issue of AMERICAN LIBRARIES would carry a report of the suit. Mr. Webster announced that the Association of Research Libraries hoped to be able to set up an Office of Scientific and Academic Publishing in order to be able to study the causal factors in the shift of scholarly publishing from professional societies to commerical firms.
8.3 CHARLESTON CONFERENCE: NOVEMBER 9-11, 1989
From material sent by the College of Charleston Office of Professional and Community Services
This year's conference on Issues in Book and Serial Acquisition seems to be named "Rememberance of Things Past." Tentative speakers are: Pieter Bolman (Pergamon Press), Doug Duchin (Blackwell North America), Michael Keller (Yale University), Bob Mastejulia (Baker & Taylor), Barbara Meyers (Meyers Consulting), Sandra Paul (SKP Associates), Edwin Shelock (Royal Society of Chemistry), and Barbara Winters (Virginia Commonwealth University), with others TBA.
Registration actually begins at 6:30 p.m., on Wednesday, November 8, at the Mills House Hotel, the conference headquarters. A new feature this year is a dinner/dance cruise on the "Spirit of Charleston" on Friday night (the menus are yummy!). Registration fee is $95.00; the dinner dance is an extra $30.00. Registration deadline is November 1. For more information about the program, travel, and accommodations, contact Katina Strauch, Head, Collection Development & Charleston Conference Coordinator, College of Charleston Libraries, Charleston SC 29424; or, (803) 792-8020.
[The registration material was sent out before Hurricane Hugo hit Charleston and did severe damage to the city. I have learned from Mike Markwith that Katina and her family are safe. They left Charleston last Thursday morning and spent the next nights at a motel just north of Columbia SC (still in the path of the storm, as it happened). They were to try to return to Charleston Saturday September 22. What all this means for the conference remains to be seen. I'll try to have something from Katina in the next issue. -Ed.]
8.4 A LIGHTHEARTED LOOK AT ALA: PART 2
Kenneth Kirkland, DePaul University Library, BITNET: LIBKLK@DEPAUL
FAXON PRICING SEMINAR. (Information previously covered in the newsletter not repeated here. -Ed.) "The Faxon Planning Report 1990." ISSN 1043-1187, was distributed and speaks for itself. A note on the verso of the title page explains that it "forms the merger of: The Faxon Collection Development Series: Library Profiles (ISSN: 0897-6562) and The Faxon Collection Development Series: Publisher Profiles (ISSN: 0897-6570)." The Report is full of tables breaking down figures on the differences between actual average budget increases 1989 and 1990 and increases requested. These are subdivided by types of libraries, as are the results of the questionnaires about librarians' decisions for adding and cancelling titles, as well as attitudes and opinions of both librarians and publishers. One particularly interesting point is the publishers' overall projection for 1990: average price increases of 6 to 8 percent for both European and U.S. titles. (These increases refer to the base prices only and do not take into account foreign exchange rates or page increases.) Publishers say they expect somewhat fewer additional volumes for 1990 than there were in 1989. The Report finds "...the majority of librarians believe that their ability to provide access to information is more important than increasing collections."
RTSD/TECHNICAL SERVICES COSTS COMMITTEE SERIALS AUTOMATION INTEREST GROUP. Snowbirds from the North voiced amazement at being in "an exotic city" and speaking at 9:00 a.m. (At least one native Texas listener felt the day and time somewhat strange, but not the locale.)
Sharon Cline McKay, Director of Library Services at EBSCO, spoke first. Her subject was "Interfacing Between Local Automated Systems and Serial Subscription Agents." In automation, "nothing lasts forever." One should always be planning for upgrades or replacements. The eight roles of players building an interface system were defined as: 1) initiator, 2) controller, 3) reactor, 4) beneficiary, 5) end user, 6) seller, 7) buyer, 8)intermediary. Summary: automation is a good thing.
Anita Branin, Associate Director of MULS (Minnesota Union List of Serials) and Document Delivery and MINITEX, and Richard Green, Consulting Data Base Specialist from OCLC, carried out the second half of the session. Their theme was "Interfacing Between Local Automated Systems and OCLC Holdings Data." Branin confided, "I thought that at least for a week people would call up and say, `What a nice system!' But no, they were as demanding as ever." "Re-keying data is becoming a part of life." Some of the major questions are: 1) What is appropriate/useful data in a NATIONAL system? 2) What is appropriate/useful data in a LOCAL system? 3) How to upload. 4) How to maintain -- tapeloading is preferred in Minnesota. 5) What capabilities are there? 6) What will these databases be in the future? What combination of national and local data? Will they be CD-ROM or fiche? 7) What will the cost be?
Richard Green noted that the HOLDINGS STATEMENT is one of the messiest areas now. We MUST have standards. Automation came first, standards came later (or "maybe they'll come later???"). Cataloging standards have been around for a hundred years, so it is about time for holdings standards to be firmly established. We got closer with Z39.42, now superseded by Z39.44. "We got caught in this." The MARC format is inching towards a "final draft." All this has been "like being given a tossed salad and asked to reconstruct the head of lettuce." OCLC is awaiting the onset of the New Online System before flipping holdings format to Z39.44. Listeners were advised to get the new MARC holdings format standards and study them, especially the 85x fields (pattern) and the 86x fields (enumeration). "We are in a pioneer stage -- everything we need is NOT in place." "Lots of confusion out there."
Mary Ann Van Cura, Hamline University School of Law, new chair of the group, provided the summary: "Progress Towards a Multiple Data Base of Holdings Data" and emphasized the formation of a committee to promulgate the same.
RTSD/SERIALS SECTION COMMITTEE ON SERIALS STANDARDS. Marjorie Bloss, from the Center for Research Libraries, called for looking at holdings statements on the international level. "We can no longer turn our backs and pretend the others do not exist." There is a draft proposal out from IFLA to be voted on. The summary level should be agreed upon first, with the detailed holdings level to be worked out later. Basic requirements so far are: 1) Title must be there (or ISSN), 2) Location (institution), 3) Sub-location (departmental holding library), 4) Call number, 5) Date of report, 6) Extent of holdings: caption, enumeration, chronology, and extent note. There is a punctuation biggie -- a different use of the semi-colon. The IFLA draft would use ";" to separate levels of parts, NOT "non-gap gaps."
Nolan Pope, Associate Director for Automation at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Library, discussed his experience in developing standards. A NISO (National Information and Standards Organization) standard takes an average of five years to be approved. Pope sees the need for movement towards a consensus and the impossibility of resulting in a perfect system for everyone. NISO does want input. Jean Hamrick at the University of Texas, Austin, is a voting member who can be contacted. One can write to ask about membership: NISO Z39; P.O. Box 1056; Bethesda MD 28017.
Joe Santusuosso of Faxon talked about "Implementation of Standards for Electronic Data Interchange by Vendors." He observed that the realization of standards should improve services, reduce costs, create product differentiation, protect market positions, and meet requirements imposed by trading partners. An illustration of the "trading partner imposition" is that GM will invoice electronically only, and therefore will not deal with a textile mill that requests a paper invoice. Improvement should be fostered by a more stable environment in which software will not change as frequently. Reasons why some vendors may choose NOT to implement standards: 1) To maintain product differentiation, 2) To maintain market position, 3) Fear of migration, 4) Use of proprietary standards, 5) Excessive cost, 6) Required by trading partner, 7) Timing. Essentials bearing on the implementation of standards are 1) Standards expertise as found in NISO, SISAC (Serials Industry Systems Advisory Committee), ISO (International Standards Organisation), ALA, and X.12; 2) Organization -- a single group responsible, broad and early involvement, and a review process; 3) Corporate commitment -- support from the top down.
THESE WERE VOICES CRYING IMPORTANT MESSAGES IN THE WILDERNESS! ALL SHOULD TAKE HEED!
RTSD/SS "THE ELECTRONIC JOURNAL." Douglas R. White from the School of Social Science at the University of California, Irvine, spoke on "Editing an Electronic Journal: Experience with WORLD CULTURES." White's journal, WORLD CULTURES, published on floppy diskettes, began in 1985 and is still fairly unique. White is interested in the technology bias, observing that the Third World can't afford high technology, but several Third World libraries do subscribe because the floppy is cheap. Publication occurs first, then peer review takes place, with editing and re-issue. Issues may be sent back to the publisher for updating at a small charge. The University of California defines WORLD CULTURES as a "non-publication." "You won't get tenure" through publishing in this journal. However, White opines, "Like a small warm-blooded mammal in the age of electronic dinosaurs, the future of flexible and rapidly evolving desktop electronic journals may hold more of a future than we currently envision."
Edward Kurdyla, Jr., Director of Electronic Publication and Information Delivery Division of OCLC, discussed "The State and Future of Electronic Journals." Kurdyla praised the Z39.59 1988 electronic manuscript standard for mark-up as a most important development. It does for publishing what the MARC standard did for bibliographic records. Electronic copying, however, provides for the greatest potential danger. ABUSE of electronic copying, that is, is the danger. Publishers and librarians must be vigilant together, must sit down and talk about the problem.
8.5 REPORT ON OTHER ALA MEETINGS
Christian Boissonnas, Cornell Univ. Library, BITNET: CBY@CORNELLC.
[Christian kept a diary of his experience in Dallas, and I wish we had room to print it all, especially the menus. Here's a sample: at l'Entrecote -- Wild Boar Sausage with Truffled Alsatian Noodles and Wild Berries, Young Curled Endives and Watercress with Sauteed Lamb Sweetbreads, Grilled Loin of Rabbit and Roasted Leg Stuffed with Liver and Pecans, Raspberry Pie with Cinnamon Souffle. -Ed.]
RTSD ACQUISITIONS COMMITTEE. We reviewed the recently held Berkeley Regional Acquisitions Institute; it was a huge success. We discussed the forthcoming Northeast Regional Institute. We will hold a program in Chicago next year on Funding Future Acquisitions. I don't know who is in charge or what it will cover.
We talked about the proposal to make CMDC (Collection Management and Development Committee) an RTSD Section. The RTSD Resources Section Policy and Planning Committee recommended the formation of a Collection Management and Development Section and an Acquisitions Section to replace the existing committees. The Serials and Resources sections would be abolished and the Acquisitions Section would include the former Serials Section Acquisitions Committee. Any stray catalogers orphaned by this would be recovered by CCS. We voted to support all of this, not because it made sense, but because we should become a section if CMDC became one.
The Acquisitions Committee currently is working on three guides. These deal with Financial Management, Out-of-Print Materials, and Preservation in Acquisitions Processing.
Joe Barker is heading an effort to update the Third World Bookdealers. There are jurisdictional issues involving CMDC (selection guides), SS (Directory of Subscription Agents), further confused by the ALA Publications Division which wants SS to collapse TWB into its directory.
Next came a great report from the Liaison to the Serials Section Acquisitions Committee. It seems that this committee has decided to develop a guide on vendor evaluation. Prudently, they decided to limit the scope of this thing, at least initially, to periodical vendors. Before proceeding, however, they felt they needed to identify a list of relevant terms to define. So far they have 266 terms and no definitions.
The LAMA-SASS Acquisitions Committee (if you're counting, this is the third acquisitions committee within ALA; there are also 5 relevant discussion groups that I know of) has on tap: For Midwinter, an open discussion meeting on ethics; for Summer 1990, one on Creative Fund Accounting; for 1991, one on the vendor/library interface. I will be happy to go to the one on Creative Fund Accounting and push NOTIS. The whole world deserves to know how creative it can be.
Now, here is a potentially big issue. The RTSD RS Education Committee has been charged, they don't exactly know by whom, to develop a document on basic competencies for acquisitions librarians, and did the Acquisitions Committee want to participate? Well, I could see my colleagues becoming nervous, so they spent a considerable amount of time discussing if there should be an Acquisitions Education Committee at the Section level or a subcommittee on education of this committee. I did not see how this was relevant to the question posed by the RS Education Committee, but by that time it was already 5:00 p.m., and I still had to speak. So, I lost interest.
I said above that there are five discussion groups relevant to Acquisitions. By now there may be six, or seven. Some potential ALA bureaucrat talked about a potential Heads of Acquisitions Discussion Group.
Then, it was my turn. I spoke about the Clearinghouse on Prices proposal and got a near unanimous expression of support to go ahead and form a steering committee, and to keep it out of ALA. Dissenting was Joe Barker. He's interested only if we're going to gather data on foreign expenditures as well. He'll come around.
RTSD TECHNICAL SERVICES COMMITTEE PROGRAM ON COSTS, TECHNOLOGY AND UTILITIES. Paul Mosher started the program by reviewing the history of networks. "They are fundamental to our existence" and "the relationship between libraries and networks is as natural as that between apples and pie." He also made the following points:
- The escalation of journal costs forces networking and resource-sharing. - Networking of cataloging information results in lower processing costs. - Networks redistribute costs, not save money. - If we continue to withhold the utilities (read: RLIN or OCLC) end-product from end-users we will succeed in getting our presidents and university librarians to cut them out of the library.Peter Spyers-Duran, Dean of Libraries at Wayne State University, taught me that only 6.5 percent of libraries have automated systems of any kind, because:
- Software costs are too high and they are increasing. - The technology currently available requires such large investments that libraries are left with limited options. They only do what they did before, only in computerized fashion.He also showed some ARL statistics which supposedly prove that budgets for automation have increased by the precise amount by which budgets for personnel and materials have decreased. It looked plausible, but I would want to see more analysis before agreeing.
Ward Shaw, Executive Director of the Colorado Alliance of Research Libraries, said that the issue of cost and technologies is difficult to deal with because it is changing all the time. Then he told us about CARL.
Bonnie Juergens, Interim Executive Director of AMIGOS, pointed out that the cost to libraries of belonging to and getting OCLC products and services was less than 3 percent of their budgets. She hypothesized that a librarian who tried to cut out that expenditure would not stay in the saddle very long, so necessary and integrated in the life of libraries had they become. She became a little too evangelical about the "networking nineties," which made a perfect opening for....
Jim Michalko, President of the Research Libraries Group, Inc., who brought us down to earth. First, he said, we should distinguish between cost and price. The two are not synonyms, and people forget that. He made six points, two each about costs, technology, and utilities:
1. Utilities have enormous fixed costs before anyone does a single search. These represent 30 percent of RLIN's budget. The mix of costs is changing, but they are still essentially fixed. Communications costs are increasing but computer support costs are decreasing by a comparable amount.
2. We are creating a larger and larger pool of fixed costs by replicating the national network at various local and regional levels. He is not sure we can afford it.
1. Increases in computing power are changing the local landscape. Bringing all these futuristic products to clients is not going to happen without fundamental issues being addressed, like, who pays?
2. The investment in standards, hardware, and software is going to be very high. So high, in fact, that we can't afford to do it wrong.
Utilities (Data resources)
1. The value of a central data resource has been put into question. Some say that the electronic interstate system, by making it possible to shop for data, will make central data resources obsolete. He doesn't agree with that. The utilities are valuable, not only for cataloging, but also as a shared resource.
2. Is the library community willing to pay the price for a central data resource when it is much higher, as it will be, when used as a shared resource?
8.6 NEW AWARD?
Patricia Rice, Pennsylvania State University, BITNET: POR@PSULIAS.
I think ALA should institute a new award: The Worst Frequency Statement of the Year Award. Have you seen the frequency statement of NEW KOREA? I quote: "NEW KOREA...is published weekly except the 5th Thursday of any month and the Thursday (other than the 5th Thursday) nearest: New Year's Day; Martin Luther King's Birthday; Washington's Birthday; Easter Sunday; Memorial Day; Independence Day; Labor Day; Columbus Day; Veterance [sic] Day; Thanksgiving Day; and Christmas Day....(Really, I'm not making this up!)
8.7 HAMAKER'S HAYMAKERS
Chuck Hamaker, Louisiana State University Library, BITNET: NOTCAH@LSUVM.
Many newsletter readers will remember with a fair amount of dismay the decision VCH Publishers made to force all orders for American libraries through their Deerfield Beach FL U.S. distribution office and the concomitant problems raised for receipt, claiming, and payment. Well, what goes around.... VCH has announced in a letter to vendors with their 1990 price list that from now on subscribers to ANGEWANDTE CHEMIE and ADVANCED MATERIALS will receive their copies via air mail direct from Germany, "resulting in faster delivery to the subscriber." Because that is one of the points originally raised in complaining about the Deerfield Beach distribution system (actually stuff was air-freighted to New York and then maybe to Deerfield Beach, and then to libraries??? or, was it from Germany to New York to American subscribers?), it's interesting to see this admission of what we knew all along: air mail directly from Europe was faster than handling anything with lots of hands in the pie.
8.8 SERIALS CANCELLED AT NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF STANDARDS AND TECHNOLOGY
From material sent by Patricia Berger, ALA President and Director, Information Resources & Services, NationalInstitute of Standards and Technology
The President of the American Library Association is not exempt from the need to cancel serials. Pat Berger has sent a "Memorandum for All NIST Employees" from Acting Director Raymond G. Kammer, dated August 31, 1989, which describes incredibly high serials price increases and the procedure taken by Berger and the staff of the Research Information Center (RIC) to reduce the library's financial obligation: cancelling 200 subscriptions for 1989. Kammer then says:
Unfortunately, the amount "saved" from this exercise did not offset the price increases for those journals which were renewed in 1989. Therefore, the RIC staff undertook a title-by-title analysis of the use of "high-ticket" journals. RIC staff examined data collected over the last 6 years regarding the numbers and titles of such journals checked out by NIST staff and associates, the numbers and titles of journals lent to outside institutions (particularly institutions which lend to RIC), the numbers and titles of journals photocopied, and the numbers and titles of journals perused on the RIC premises. "Low Journal Use" was defined as 24 or fewer uses OF ANY KIND during the last 6 years.... As a result of that analysis, 77 more titles will be dropped in 1990, for a "saving" of $36.4K.
Kammer, in support of this effort, asks NIST staff and other users not to use NIST funds OF ANY KIND to enter new subscriptions for these titles. In addition, he continues, "page charges and/or reprint payments for articles authored by NIST staff or NIST associates which will be published in any of these journals after 1989 will not be paid for from NIST funds." The list of cancelled titles attached to the memo is interesting. Thirty-three Pergamon journals averaging $324.03 were cancelled, as well as 15 from Elsevier averaging $303.60, 10 from Gordon & Breach averaging $1,620.80, and 19 from 18 other publishers averaging $262.00.
Readers of the NEWSLETTER ON SERIALS PRICING ISSUES are encouraged to share the information in the newsletter by electronic or paper methods. We would appreciate credit if you quote from the newsletter.
The NEWSLETTER ON SERIALS PRICING ISSUES is published by the American Library Association's Association of Library Collections and Technical Services, Publisher/Vendor-Library Relations Committee's Subcommittee on Serials Pricing Issues. Editor: Marcia Tuttle, BITNET: TUTTLE@UNC. BITNET; Faxon's DataLinx: TUTTLE; ALANET: ALA0348; Paper mail: Serials Department, C.B. #3938 Davis Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill NC 27599-3938. Other committee members are: Deana Astle (Clemson University), Mary Elizabeth Clack (Harvard University), Jerry Curtis (Consultant), Charles Hamaker (Louisiana State University), Robert Houbeck (University of Michigan).