Marcia Tuttle, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Well, I missed it! I had planned something big for February 27, 1994 -- the fifth anniversary of the first issue of the _Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues_ -- but the Davis Library virus got me. Instead, let me just thank some people and brag a little. The editorial board contributes text (asked and unasked!), suggests and approves policy, and tries to keep me in line. They also listen a lot. Thank you Deana Astle, Jerry Curtis, Janet Fisher, Fred Friend, Chuck Hamaker, Danny Jones, Jim Mouw, and Heather Steele. My appreciation also to two original editorial board members, Mary Beth Clack and Bob Houbeck.
Five years ago we were so very pleased with our 125 paper copies (for about 50 subscribers) and maybe 50 electronic readers. We never thought we would increase so fast or so far. Matter of fact, we never thought we would continue to publish this long; we thought a year or two at most. Surely the serials pricing crisis would be over by then.... Thanks to all of you who read the newsletter, respond in words or in action to topics covered, and continue to submit notices and articles! Here is who you are geographically:
Australia has 60 subscribers Brazil has 2 subscribers Canada has 92 subscribers Chile has 1 subscriber Denmark has 1 subscriber El Salvador has 1 subscriber Finland has 1 subscriber France has 1 subscriber Germany has 3 subscribers Hong Kong has 5 subscribers Ireland has 3 subscribers Israel has 5 subscribers Mexico has 1 subscriber Netherlands has 25 subscribers New Zealand has 2 subscribers Puerto Rico has 1 subscriber Singapore has 1 subscriber South Africa has 4 subscribers Sweden has 4 subscribers Switzerland has 2 subscribers Taiwan has 1 subscriber United Kingdom has 68 subscribers United States has 1340 subscribersThank you, all 1624 (plus those 3 hidden names) of you, for your support.
108.2 FOLLOW-UP TO _JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF TOXICOLOGY_ RENEWAL PROBLEMS.
Marcia Tuttle, email@example.com.
Newsletter 104 carried reports from two subscription agents describing renewal problems with the _Journal of the American College of Toxicology_, which had changed publishers after the 1993 volume. Briefly, the former publisher, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., had replaced subscribers' orders with one of its own journals, _In Vitro Toxicology_, and refused to return 1994 renewal money to subscription agents. Raven Press, new publisher of JACT, was continuing the journal even though it had not yet received subscription payments.
In mid-February I received the following letter on the Liebert letterhead:
Dear Ms. Tuttle: I am writing to respond to the comments appearing in the January 30 issue of _Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues_ regarding our handling of renewals to the _Journal of the American College of Toxicology_. Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. contacted _Journal of the American College of Toxicology_ subscribers no less than three times, giving them a choice between subscribing to _In Vitro Toxicology: A Journal of Cellular and Molecular Toxicology_, a different Liebert journal, or a refund for the _Journal of the American College of Toxicology_. To date, the overwhelming number of subscribers chose _In Vitro Toxicology_. There have been less than 25 requests for refunds, all of which were honored. In the spirit of fairness, please inform your readers of our efforts to handle this situation efficiently and fairly. Yours truly, Michael Seiden Director of Marketing Operations Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.-----
I have acquired copies of the three letters Liebert sent to JACT subscribers. The first, dated November 1993, began:
Dear Subscriber to Journal of the American College of Toxicology, We will no longer be publishing this title after 1993; instead I am pleased to tell you that we will be sending you IN VITRO TOXICOLOGY, which will be published in a new enlarged and fully typeset format, beginning with Volume 7, 1994. I believe you will be even more satisfied...-----
This letter continued, discussing the editor, the "emphasis," and the size of _In Vitro Toxicology_. The second letter was dated December 1993. It begins:
Dear Subscriber: Here is your issue of IN VITRO TOXICOLOGY: A Journal of Molecular and Cellular Toxicology (ISSN 0888-319X), the journal that will replace your subscription to THE JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF TOXICOLOGY. You will automatically receive a refund of $57, which represents the difference in price between the two journals....-----
This second letter continues with three paragraphs discussing the editor, the "emphasis," and the size of _In Vitro Toxicology_. The third letter is not dated, but it begins "Your immediate reply is required by 01/10/94...." and continues:
Re: JOURNAL OF THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF TOXICOLOGY Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. will no longer be publishing this title in 1994. Instead, we will offer you two options: Option #1: Replace your 1994 subscription to the Journal of the American College of Toxicology with a subscription to IN VITRO TOXICOLOGY: A Journal of Molecular and Cellular Toxicology (ISSN 0888-319X).... [Followed by the usual paragraphs about that journal, its editor, and its size.] Option #2: If you already subscribe to IN VITRO TOXICOLOGY: A Journal of Molecular and Cellular Toxicology, or if this Journal does not fulfill your current collection development needs, we will offer you a subscription to any other Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. journal that your library does not currently subscribe to. I have enclosed a list of our publications which you can use to make your selection.-----
The form to be faxed back to the publisher lists only two choices:
[ ] YES - please immediately cancel my subscription to the Journal of the American College of Toxicology and replace it with a subscription to IN VITRO TOXICOLOGY (Option #1). [ ] YES - please immediately cancel my subscription to the Journal of the American College of Toxicology and replace it with a subscription to the Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. journal listed below. (I understand the library cannot choose a journal the library currently subscribes to (Option #2).-----
I was curious as to what prompted the change of publisher and spoke with the journal editor, Dr. Robert Diener. He mentioned inaccuracies, inconsistencies in pricing, and inadequate promotion of the journal.
Finally, on February 22, I faxed a letter to Mary Ann Liebert, president of Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., It quoted the paragraph of Mr. Seiden's letter that says Liebert had offered JACT subscribers a refund. I attached copies of that letter and the three letters the publisher had sent to subscribers. My letter reads, in part:
Not one of these letters mentions a refund for those who do not want to receive _In Vitro Toxicology_ or another Liebert journal. Nor does any letter mention that JACT is still being published; the strong implication is that it has ceased publication. We both know that is not the case. Is this how scholarly publishers now do business? Under these circumstances I cannot print Mr. Seiden's letter without making an editorial comment concerning the three letters sent to subscribers which did _not_, as Mr. Seiden claims, offer a refund. Perhaps you would like to comment, in which case I would print your letter instead of Mr. Seiden's. Failing to receive any comment to clarify the situation, I will be left with only one alternative and that is to print his letter and point out the contradiction that exists. I intend to compose and send the next issue of the newsletter on Saturday, February 26 and look forward to receiving your reply prior to that date.-----
A week after that date, I have heard nothing.
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+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ The NEWSLETTER ON SERIALS PRICING ISSUES (ISSN: 1046-3410) is published by the editor through the Office of Information Technology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as news is available. Editor: Marcia Tuttle, Internet: firstname.lastname@example.org; Paper mail: Serials Department, CB #3938 Davis Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill NC 27515-8890; Telephone: 919 962-1067; FAX: 919 962-4450. Editorial Board: Deana Astle (Clemson University), Jerry Curtis (Springer Verlag New York), Janet Fisher (MIT Press), Charles Hamaker (Louisiana State University), Daniel Jones (University of Texas Health Science Center), James Mouw (University of Chicago), and Heather Steele (Blackwell's Periodicals Division). The Newsletter is available on the Internet, Blackwell's CONNECT, and Readmore's ROSS. EBSCO customers may receive the Newsletter in paper format.
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