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RE: PsycArticles License

> Help me here -- do you have undergrads who would take an academic article
> from APA and e-mail it to several thousand users?


Picture this: A fourth-year psychology major needs an article for a class
on the therapeutic treatment of depression.  His library doesn't subscribe
to the journal in question, so he submits an ILL request.  The article
arrives a couple of days later in his e-mailbox.  Because he's a helpful
guy, he takes five seconds out of his busy day and forwards the message to
the other 28 students in his class; after all, they need the article too
and most of them don't know what ILL is.  In the course of five seconds,
that one copy has become 29 copies.  (If he'd gotten the article in paper,
could he have made 28 photocopies, collated and stapled them and handed
them out to his classmates?  You bet.  Would he have done so?  Probably
not.)  Now, most of his classmates will just read the copy they've got,
and discard it later in the semester when they clean out their
e-mailboxes.  But one of them is a regular participant in DEPRESSION-L, an
online discussion group that includes 850 other participants.  This
article addresses several issues that have been discussed on the list
recently, so she forwards it to the group. Now the 29 copies have become
879 copies, all in the course of a day or two, and it only took two people
with a fuzzy understanding of copyright law to make it happen.

I submit to you that this scenario is not far-fetched.  And it is only
possible in the electronic realm; there is no way this kind of fast,
wholesale redistribution can take place with print.  And that, I believe,
is why publishers often (though not always) want us to use print copies
for ILL.  I'm not saying it's wonderful, only that it seems reasonable to

Rick Anderson
Director of Resource Acquisition
The University Libraries
University of Nevada, Reno        "All Reviews in the world
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Reno, NV  89557                    of being virtuous.  None
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FX  (775) 784-1328                   -- Gustave Flaubert