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RE: Monopolies in publishing

You asked about librarians. I'm not a physics specialist, but there are in
general two reasons:

  The scientists still use them
  The scientists still cite them.

Libraries will meet the needs of their patrons; they react to user
behavior, they do not set it.

Speaking personally, it seems obvious to me that a journal will survive as
long as the readers want it, and the publication system will be determined
by what the authors and readers choose to do. Whatever becomes of the
system for accessing the scholarly literature, the role of the libraries
is merely to facilitate it. If there are multiple parallel or antagonistic
systems, this becomes harder, but not necessarily impossible.

On Sun, 13 Jul 2003, Jan Velterop wrote:

> Terry, You're absolutely right. In physics, articles do seem to exist in
> two places. But they're not exactly the same. In Archiv, they are
> preprints without a journal 'label sown into them', and in the journals
> they obviously have this 'label'. The biggest puzzle to me is, too, why do
> large numbers of librarians fork out often substantial sums, basically
> just for the labels. Maybe the labels are worth it. Perhaps one of the
> librarians on this list might want to comment.
> Jan