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RE: Wellcome Trust report

Fred is of course right, that "if some subscribers want to retain print,
surely they and not all subscribers should bear the cost of print?"  He is
also right that, in my experience, 10% is not nearly as likely to produce
discontinuation than a higher number--for both financial and psychological
reasons. The extreme is the practice of some the US biological societies,
which charged double if you wanted both. That certainly provided

I add that the ability of a research library to drop print in fields it
which it concentrates is dependent upon xtremely reliable preservation
arrangements. This must involve more than one national library (or
equivalent), and be sufficiently robust to survive both the exit of a
publisher from publishing scientific journals, and the possible economic
or political inability of any particular country to fulfill its
obligations. There is sufficient experiencet about need for multinational
archiving:  Consider if the scientific world in the 1930s had decided to
concentrate preservation in the leading scientific country (Germany);
consider if the preservation of Russian material had depended solely on
the USSR of Stalin's period, or the economic abilities of today's Russia.

None of this should prevent research libraries from relying of electronic
access in all fields in which they do not specially concentrate, and
non-research libraries from relying upon it in all subjects. The
contribution the library communities could make immediately is the
establishment of a clearer understanding of which libraries concentrate in
which subjects. On a longer range, they should urge each nation to archive
an electronic version of not just its own national production, but that of
other nations as well. We should not be discouraged by the relative lack
of success of some similar arrangements in the print era: this is much
more practical now, both in terms of space and of expense.  What
publishers can do is to facilitate the arrangement to make archival copies
available not just at one or two national libraries, but at many.

-----Original Message-----
From:	owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu on behalf of "FrederickFriend"
Sent:	Tue 6/8/2004 7:55 PM
To:	liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
Subject:	Re: Wellcome Trust report

I suspect that if libraries were to be given the option of dropping print
in return for a 25% reduction in price, many would go for that option.
That size of reduction in price would more than cover the VAT, which
anyway is only a UK problem. Globally, savings on subscription prices of
that order of magnitude would make a significant contribution towards
financing a secure archive. Libraries have not been offered that option
and therefore there has not been the financial incentive to move away from