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Re: Non-exclusive licenses & copyright

Karen, et al:  I agree that the notion of the non-exclusive license and
provider is not new and that A&I publishers have been working this way for
as much as a couple of decades.  That is the industry we look to as a role
model for successful transition from print to e-environment.  Mind you,
there are quite a few differences between secondary services and primary
texts such as books and journals, and so it is not clear to me whether the
transition (to e-) by journal publishers will be parallel to A&I, only 20
years later.  In any case, the one difference worth pointing to (maybe) is
the fact that the A&I providers are more generally owners/creators of
their own resources; they hire the staff that do the indexing and
abstracting work as works for hire.  It is not frequent that the
ownership, at least of indexing works (though not always of abstracting
works) are in dispute. 

With the journal article, the publisher is not the author, and so a
copyright transfer is generally desired by the publisher, though
increasingly publishers might be becoming less adamant about this.  Let's
say that the publisher now receives non-exclusive transfers from authors,
who themselves also make the work available in alternative ways (on their
web sites, on preprint servers, etc.).  I suppose one of the biggest
differences is that the publisher, let alone all the e-service providers
or aggregators, could be in a position of competing with the author as
well as with their "usual" competitors (other aggregators).  Also, the
competitive edge may come more from service than content.  Doesn't this
put additional control in the hands of the successful aggregators (rather
than the primary publishers -- or perhaps even the authors)? 

I'm thinking as I write ... this feels like a different situation than
existing p-world In several important ways..

Ann Okerson

Karen Hunter wrote:

>Is the notion of non-exclusive licenses to different electronic
>vendors or aggregators really new?  Publishers of a & i
>services have made their databases available for years over
>many hosts on a non-exclusive basis -- Dialog, DataStar,
>JICST, Lexis-Nexis, STN, Ovid, OCLC and others now gone.
>The databases are also available for local licensing and on
>CD-ROM.  The customer then chooses the access source.
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