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Post-cancellation arrangements and ScienceDirect

Dear Mrs Dervou:

Thank you for your reply.  Since contract renewal discussions are
continuing between Elsevier and SELL - lively, open and we hope productive
discussion - I will limit this posted reply to archiving matters.

The current contracts between Elsevier and SELL members distinguish
clearly between archiving and continuing post-cancellation access, and
these should not be conflated.

It commits Elsevier to assuring long-term access to our electronic
publications, which we have achieved with our archiving agreement with the
Koninklijk Bibliotheek.  The link
r-en.html>  ) will confirm that this is a strategic disaster planning and
strategic continuity initiative rather than a means of coping with
individual contractual matters.

The second commitment is that organisations cancelling entirely their
ScienceDirect agreement have the right to purchase and spin locally
electronic copies of all the years/titles for which they have paid.  If
you cancel individual titles but remain an SD customer you have continuing
access to all paid-for years as part of your main agreement and no
additional payments are necessary.  Post-cancellation SD access is not
mentioned in the SELL contract and formed no part of the original
negotiations because at that time this had not been introduced.

AsLike anyorganisation we have to cover our costs and satisfy our
stakeholders, in the broadest sense, in order to survive. To do this we
seek to set prices that are as fair and equitable as possible across all
our customers taking a lot of care to listen to what our customers tell
us.  The UTL pricing system grew out of feedback telling us we needed to
strike a fairer balance between big and small customers; and we added an
online continuing access alternative when we were told that the
locally-mounted option was not a real option for most of you.  In this
context we feel it is logical and fair for us to charge former SD
customers for online access, because the alternative is for current
customers to be subsidising them forever.

I hope that this clarifies the situation regarding the arrangements for
assuring access to non-current SD subscriptions.  Regarding the
Elsevier/SELL negotiations, all concerned are now working hard to ensure
that we reach workable compromises on the outstanding issues.

Tony McSean
Director of Library Relations

-----Original Message-----

From: owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
[mailto:owner-liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu] On Behalf Of Claudine Dervou
Sent: Tuesday, October 26, 2004 6:10 AM
To: liblicense-l@lists.yale.edu
Subject: Elsevier and SELL

Dear Mr. Mcsean,

Thank you for your reply to the SELL statement I would like to make the
following comments.

1. Concerning the archival access. As far as I know only 16 sites in the
world host locally ScienceDirect. This means that the majority of your
customers have online access to your servers. Of course Elsevier can
charge a fee to cover costs for providing access to purchased material if
there is no renewal of an agreement, but charging per full-text download
for material already purchased is unacceptable. Elsevier's sale managers
told us that this is an non-negotiable principle. The same, we were told,
applies for the cost of the full-text downdload: the price is

2. Indeed for the past 5 years Elsevier had reasonable price increases.
That was the reason we became customers. But with your new pricing model
the price increase is much higher.  With your new UTL model you give less
access for more money.

Basically with your new pricing model we are damned if we sign (higher
cost) and damned if we do not sign (we still have to pay hundreds of
thousands of dollars for material already purchased). Local archiving is a
solution but it does not happen overnight. We should have been forwarned
for the consequenses of choosing access over local loading. The previous
license agreements stipulated perpetual access under no specific terms.

The very high use of SD worldwide is not an excuse for high price

I agree that open and constructive two-way communication is very
important, if it is indeed two-way.


Claudine Dervou
Steering Committee