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

RE: Peter Jasco review of PubSCIENCE

Strange that Jasco thinks $500,000 is a lot of money to create and sustain
an index. Given the complaints in his article, it seems to me the major
ones are currency of linking mechanisms and coverage, i.e. maintaining
current links , overall coverage and de-dupping --the answer is support
for the service rather than continuing to provide inadequate dollars to do
the job.

For something to be as important for the sciences as PubMed is to the
medical, -what I understand to be the goal, we should be lobbying for more
support. Has Jasco paid for any of the commercial indexes lately?  
Perhaps he doesn't realize that institutions are seeing prices for access
to standard sci-tech databases in the $100,000 range-per institution?

Perhaps the answer is support for a resource that is badly underfunded and
even at that providing an important alternative for individuals and
institutions that can't purchase access to commerical database providers
products in the sciences. Should we shut out everyone except those who
work in large institutions and commercial research enterprises from seeing
what is being published in sci-tech?

Isn't this an example of a service that can benefit many, if properly
supported? Large well funded institutions can afford to purchase major
science indexes-and Pubscience is really no competition to those
products(although various publishers have claimed it is-without much proof
from my perspective.)

In addition, both in the US and abroad, many academic institutions don't
have science budgets large enough to pay for even the most inexpensive of
the science databases. What is wrong with providing them with a basic tool
at government expense?

We talk about access to research being critical for continued development.
Qualty Indexing structure is the first step to indentifying appropriate
research. You sort of wonder why more publishers aren't cooperating with
PubScience, especially when several not cooperating with it are taking
part in third world access programs. -i,.e. they realize apparently that
areas without access to current research are severely hindered. We have
such pockets in the US as well, and pubscience was a valiant attempt to
provide them with some coverage of the sciences.

Smaller institutions and individivuals not affiliated with large
institutions could be very well served by Pubscience if it were actually
encouraged and supported. Given that much of the science produced by US
authors is science funded by the government, -and thus a significant
portion world-wide it makes perfectly good sense for such a government
supported index to exist and be supported properly.

What perhaps Jasco is actually reflecting is the success of commercial
companies- in lobbying congress to starve off a govt. supported database
claiming it "competes" or actually MIGHT compete with them. My own cursory
study of its content suggests it covers titles that the major science
indexes neglect.

It's never been given a decent chance of providing an index for the
general public for access to research paid for by that same public.

And yes, I've seen SIIA's reasons for trying to shut it down. It's too bad
that expensive lobbying has this unfortunate result.  I have to assume
more has been spent in lobbying to close down Pubscience than has been
spent in creating and supporting it.

Chuck Hamaker 

-----Original Message-----
From: Grogg, Jill [mailto:jgrogg@library.msstate.edu]
Sent: Tuesday, September 10, 2002 4:42 PM
To: 'liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu'
Subject: RE: Peter Jasco review of PubSCIENCE

Interesting, considering Jasco's earlier review of PubSCIENCE in Link Up,
17, no. 3 (May/June 2000): 3, 8. Abstract available at:

"PubSCIENCE is an excellent resource for those who cannot afford the
fee-based databases." "It can easily become the preferred source also for
those who currently subscribe to one or more of the commercial databases."

Jill E. Grogg, Assistant Professor
Instruction Services Librarian
Mississippi State University
[voice] 662.325.8162  [fax] 662.325.4263
[e-mail] jgrogg@library.msstate.edu
[url] http://www2.msstate.edu/~jeg98/

-----Original Message-----
From: Sloan, Bernie [mailto:bernies@uillinois.edu]
Sent: Monday, September 09, 2002 5:43 PM
To: 'liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu'; 'DIG_REF@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU'
Subject: Peter Jasco review of PubSCIENCE

Peter Jasco reviews PubSCIENCE in the most recent edition of "Peters
Digital Reference Shelf":


Referring to the recent proposal to shut down PubSCIENCE, Jasco notes:

"I am not at all concerned by the proposal because this is a poorly
implemented database considering the whopping $500,000 a year it gets from

Bernie Sloan
Senior Library Information Systems Consultant
University of Illinois Office for Planning and Budgeting
338 Henry Administration Building
506 S. Wright Street
Urbana, IL  61801