[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

RE: Library response to BioMed Central's new Institutional Membership Program

Personally, I don't see an intrinsic difference between institutions
paying a fixed fee to BioMed and page charges required by many society
presses, except who pays the fee (the library or the author).  They are
both fees levied on the submitter.  In the new model, a flat yearly fee is
charged irrespective of the number of articles submitted to a small number
(50) new and untested online journals.  It also comes with the restriction
that the sum of these author charges goes to one commercial publisher as
opposed to being spread around the publishing world.  I think the concept
of providing free uninhibited access to scholarly information is a
laudable concept; however, I think that the BioMed solution is more
restrictive and limiting than the traditional model.  BioMed is *not* a
non-profit society publisher -- they are a for-profit commercial
enterprise competing for subscription dollars like everyone else.  If
libraries are considering the BioMed model, we should also consider paying
the page-charges to non-profit publishers, many of which have proven to
produce prestigious scholarly journals at affordable prices to libraries.

Phil Davis
Life Sciences Bibliographer
Albert R. Mann Library, Cornell University

At 06:38 PM 1/8/2002 -0500, David L. Osterbur wrote:
>As a librarian I must applaud efforts to make access to the scholarly
>literature free and open for all.  The proposal for institutions to pay a
>yearly fee for free submissions by their faculty is also an interesting
>one but it puts a strain on already tight library budgets.  it is also
>difficult to justify the expense of paying this fee when the journals are
>so new and their reputations have not been established - though I would
>personally like to see the work judged more by the content and less by
>where it is published.
>David L. Osterbur, Ph.D.
>Biological Laboratories Library
>Harvard University
>16 Divinity Avenue
>Cambridge, MA 02138
>Tel (617) 495-3944 Fax (617) 495-9300
>E-mail: dosterbu@mcb.harvard.edu
>Dear all
>I'm trying to get an idea of the perception of librarians and funding
>agencies to the BioMed Central proposal (appended below for memory), as I
>may write something on this. If any of you would like to communicate your
>thoughts, please send to me directly on d.butler@nature-france.com (or to
>the list)
>It's probably important to consider separatedly the position of libraries
>on the viability of the proposed model itself, the pros and cons on a
>practical basis for you, and then as it relates to BioMed Central itself.
>Any thoughts most welcome.
>Happy new year
>PS Don't hesitate at anytime to draw my attention to any current or
>upcoming issues which you feel are newsworthy, and would be interested to
>see covered by Nature
>Declan Butler
>European correspondent, Nature,
>& Editor, Nature Yearbook of Science and Technology.
>d.butler@nature-france.com <mailto:d.butler@nature-france.com>
>http://www.nature.com <mailto:d.butler@nature.comhttp://www.nature.com>