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Secret pricing (RE: Response from Ted Bergstrom to Ann Okerson)

> In the same way, librarians are reluctant to share pricing information
> (and willfully accept confidentiality clauses) if they believe if they
> are getting a "good deal" from the publishers.

Which, if you think about it, is really pretty silly.  If we all agree to
keep our pricing secret, how does any individual library know that it's
getting a better-than-average deal?  It seems equally likely that you're
getting a worse-than-average deal.  After all, everyone can't get a better
deal than everyone else; if Library A is getting an artificially low
price, then somewhere there's a Library B whose price is higher than it
would have been if the pricing were standardized and publicly known.  
Sales reps want us all to think that we're the Library A, of course -- but
if prices are secret, we have no way of knowing that we're not actually
the Library B.

Rick Anderson
Dir. of Resource Acquisition
University of Nevada, Reno Libraries
(775) 784-6500 x273