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Quality of Service

The American astronomical journals are mirrored on three sites in the US,
Japan, and France. In my experience in the US and Europe, the current
available bandwidth makes each of these sites an adequate backup. I think
such an arrangement is absolutely crucial and probably should be in a
license agreement.

The usual words about maintaining service for a high percentage of the
time are OK, but, I would think they would not offer much in the way of
practical continuity of delivery if something drastic (fire, theft,
earthquake, etc.) were to happen to the main site. If the service goes
down, then the lawyers can wrangle about it, but the readers are left in
the lurch.

All the legal remedies in the world will not bring the service back on the
air any faster. Monetary redress won't get the information to the user.
Far better, in my opinion, to ensure that there is some practical backup,
rather than insisting on license clauses which make the administrators and
legal folks happy, but which contribute very little to ensuring the actual
delivery of information -- which is what we are all about.

Perhaps we should all keep this nuance in mind when we draft model

Peter B. Boyce    -   Senior Consultant for Electronic Publishing, AAS
email: pboyce@aas.org
Summer address:                                Winter: 4109 Emery Place,
33 York St., Nantucket, MA 02554        Washington, DC 20016
Phone:  508-228-9062                           202-244-2473