136.2 BRITISH LIBRARY RETAINS GORDON & BREACH JOURNALS, Jim Vickery
136.3 RESPONSE TO NAYLOR ARTICLE IN NO. 134
136.4 1996 PRICE PROJECTIONS FOR CANADIAN LIBRARIES, Virginia Roy-Branch
136.5 HAMAKER'S HAYMAKERS, Chuck Hamaker
Marcia Tuttle, email@example.com.
Welcome back, Chuck Hamaker! We've missed Hamaker's Haymakers in recent years. I feared that time had mellowed his voice, but I am glad to see that it has not; we need that voice.136.2 BRITISH LIBRARY RETAINS GORDON & BREACH JOURNALS
Jim Vickery, British Library, Jim.Vickery@london.british-library.uk.
[Received February 20, 1995. Apologies for the delay. -ed.] After a period in which many of the world's research libraries have faced the possibility of cancelling Gordon & Breach and Harwood Academic jour- nals, the British Library has now secured an acceptable arrangement for renewing its 1995 subscriptions. Our two main concerns have been resolved: use of the material will be gov- erned by English rather than Swiss law, and price increases are in line with expectations for international research journals. I am pleased that a satisfactory conclusion to the recent uncertainties has been reached, and that our readers will continue to benefit from Gordon & Breach publications during 1995.136.3 RESPONSE TO NAYLOR ARTICLE IN NO. 134
Jackie Stack, Joe Halpern, and Mignon Adams.
>From Jackie Stack, Los Alamos National Laboratory Library, firstname.lastname@example.org: ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- The question of whether the Ginsparg preprint archive subsitutes for high energy physics journals is an interesting one. Since the preprint database is maintained at Los Alamos National Laboratory, I'd like to comment. In the Los Alamos National Laboratory Research Library we have reviewed our journal collection for possible cuts twice in the last 5 years. Each of these projects involved forming a panel of 90 scientists to consult with to determine which journals to delete. The physicists on the panel, includ- ing many who use the preprint database, were unanimous in their opinion that at this time the database is not a substitute for high energy physics journals in the collection. We have not deleted any physics journals from the collection based on the use of the preprint database. The panelists say that the preprint database complements what is in the journal collection and does not substitute for the collection. ----- >From Joseph Y. Halpern, IBM, email@example.com: Barnard Naylor says: > The purpose of all this is to ask readers of NSPI whether the Ginsparg > archive shows signs of affecting the willingness of scholars in high > energy physics in their institutions to consider journal cancellations > in that field. If not, do they have any perception of what scholars want > in addition, before they feel the prop of the print-on-paper journal can > safely be abandoned. I'm a computer scientist, not a physicist, but I think I can hazard a guess as to the answer: Part of it, of course, is the innate conservative nature of scientists, but there's more. What a journal currently provides that the archive does not is a "certification" of worthiness for the paper. This certification comes through the refereeing process (however imperfect it may be) and the quality of the journal in which the paper appears. It has nothing to do with paper journals (or even necessarily with journals at all, since the certification can be decoupled from the publication pro- cess). Continuing to subscribe to journals lets you know what's been certi- fied recently and ensures the stability of the certification process. My guess is that once there is a reasonable and accepted on-line certification process, there won't be much demand for continued journal subscriptions. ----- >From MIGNON ADAMS, Philadelphia College of Pharmacy and Science, firstname.lastname@example.org: In case you're collecting statistics -- count us as one of the libraries which is already forming a faculty committee for the summer to develop a plan if journal costs increase according to the projections. I note that Toyota has cut out some of its enhancements in order to keep its product competitive when the yen is strong; publishers need to consider the same approach. And an anecdote about the physics preprint archives: a year or so ago, a physics professor was excitedly telling me about the archives, and how now he would never have to come to the library. In the next breath, he said there was a new physics journal; could we subscribe?136.4 1996 PRICE PROJECTIONS FOR CANADIAN LIBRARIES
Virginia Roy-Branch, Faxon Canada, email@example.com
[Received for SERIALST March 3, 1995. -ed.] While there have already been many pricing forecasts presented, we believe that this is the only one that deals exclusively with the financial issues and factors affecting Canadian libraries. PRELIMINARY PROJECTIONS -- 1996 SUBSCRIPTION YEAR Based on the latest information on the publisher price increases, world economic conditions, and both current and projected values of the Canadian dollar, Faxon Canada is projecting the following changes in journal sub- scription prices for 1996 subscriptions. Please note that these are prelim- inary projections based on current conditions and will be revised as the year progresses. Page Paper/ General Cancel- Currency Total Inflation Postage Inflation lations Changes ___________________________________________________________________________ Cdn Titles 2.5% 3.0% 2.1% 2.5% N/A 10.1% US Titles 2.5% 3.0% 2.5% 2.5% (2.1%) 8.4% Europ. Titles 3.0% 3.0% 2.0% 3.0% (3.1%) 7.9% Overall Increase 8.4% ___________________________________________________________________________ (Based on a collection made up of 5% Canadian, 20% European and 75% U.S. materials.) The increases detailed in each category above represent the net effect that each component is expected to have on the final subscription price. KEY ASSUMPTIONS PAGE INFLATION: Even with tighter editorial standards, increased manuscript submissions will result in more published pages again next year. PAPER & POSTAGE: After several years of stability, paper prices have sky- rocketed due to very limited inventories. Postal costs have also risen. GENERAL INFLATION: Inflation in both Europe and the U.S. has been acceler- ating and is expected to continue to rise at moderate levels. CANCELLATIONS: Publishers continue to see increased subscription cancella- tions and must therefore allocate increasing fixed costs over a shrinking unit base. CURRENCY: During 1994 the Canadian dollar weakened against European curren- cies and fell over 8 cents against the U.S. dollar. Canada's deficit prob- lems and the political uncertainty in Quebec continue to hinder its im- provement. Expectations are that the dollar will gain strength later in the year assuming a "No" vote in the Quebec referendum. The movement of the Canadian dollar is potentially the most significant factor in anticipating publisher price increases since a majority of mater- ial purchased in Canada must be paid in a foreign currency. SUMMARY: Expectations of a slightly stronger Canadian dollar lead to the price projection of an 8.4% increase on a typical collection. The price projection for your individual collection will vary based on the proportion of non-Canadian content.136.5 HAMAKER'S HAYMAKERS
Chuck Hamaker, Louisiana State University, NOTCAH@LSUVM.SNCC.LSU.EDU.
Danny Jones, in the most recent issue of NSPI, wonders where publishers and vendors are coming from projecting price increases of 10% or more for next year. Surely, he reasons, they are not listening to the market. Danny has it right. They are not listening to THIS market, the library market, because they have a basic insight into publishing processess that has taught them the ONLY market that makes a difference in their success or failure is how they perform in the competition for the flow of publishable papers. Or, as one publisher said recently, there is an upstream market and a down- stream market. Guess which market libraries are? Conventional publisher wisdom which I have heard expressed for as long as I have been engaged in talking with STM publishers is that at the end of the day, no matter what happens, if there are enough authors clamoring to be published, enough libraries will buy the product. Remember Maxwell opined that if there were so many cancellations that only 1 copy of a journal was going to be sold, the price on that one copy would just simply be very high. What Robert Maxwell was saying is that prices will just simply be raised on "remaining" subscriptions, no matter how high the price increase has to be. That is, publishers do not notice cancellations as a MARKET message because sales to libraries are a secondary although necessary by-product of their editorial and gathering operations. Yes, they charge what the market will bear, but in the end, they believe there will ALWAYS be market for their product as long as they have "good" product to sell. This explains in part why someone like our friend in Swit- zerland does not really mind if some librarians don't like his lawsuits. He KNOWS some libraries HAVE to buy his product no matter what the librar- ians think about his firm. This confidence in product, in the necessity of their product, is common to all STM publishers. And although they notice declining sales, their confidence is such that the only response many of them consider appropriate, because their loyalty is to stockholders and "authors," is to raise the price of their product high enough to maintain "adequate" margins. They have a full year in advance in payment to think about how high to raise the price, a twelve month safety margin built into their product, an inviolable safety net. I asked a publishing representative: "if you lost half your subscription base in a year would that cause you to kill a journal?" The answer was an unequivocal NO, as long as there was good paper flow. However low the core subscription list goes, there will, so the belief goes, be a base of cus- tomers who will pay whatever price is necessary. This is an elitist attitude, ingrained, systemic to publishing. But only in STM journal publishing has it become entrenched with the money to back it up. Trade book publishers live in search of the great best-seller. STM journal publishers dream of the journal that grows. Libraries dream of the lowest price. Paperflow dreams and price dreams. Competing dreams that touch only at the boundary where we exchange currency and buy THEIR dreams.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ Statements of fact and opinion appearing in the _Newsletter on Serials Pricing Issues_ are made on the responsibility of the authors alone, and do not imply the endorsement of the editor, the editorial board, or the Uni- versity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ 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 (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), Christian Boissonnas (Cornell University), Jerry Curtis (Springer Verlag New York), Janet Fisher (MIT Press), Fred Friend (University College London), Charles Hamaker (Louisiana State University), Daniel Jones (University of Texas Health Science Cen- ter), James Mouw (University of Chicago), and Heather Steele (Blackwell's Periodicals Division). The Newsletter is available on the Internet, Black- well's CONNECT, and Readmore's ROSS. EBSCO customers may receive the News- letter in paper format. To subscribe to the newsletter send a message to LISTSERV@UNC.EDU saying SUBSCRIBE PRICES [YOUR NAME]. Be sure to send that message to the listserv- er and not to Prices. You must include your name. To unsubscribe (no name required in message), you must send the message from the e-mail address by which you are subscribed. If you have problems, please contact the editor. Back issues of the Newsletter are available electronically. To get a list of available issues send a message to LISTSERV@UNC.EDU saying INDEX PRICES. To retrieve a specific issue, the message should read: GET PRICES PRICES.xx (where "xx" is the number of the issue). +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++