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Small & large publishers, was: Re: CBC and Liblicense list

One of the most difficult things for small publishers--of small
organizations in general--has always been publicity--just the difficulty
of getting noticed.  As a librarian, I must confess that although I had
seen the Darwin ads, I am guilty of more or less ignoring them among the
unmanageable immensity of mailings from many of the larger companies. The
web offers a lot of alternatives here, as your posting shows! 
Another problem is the relatively small amount of money left to librarians
for discretionary purchases after paying for the essential large journals,
published in general by companies which often do make very large profits.
This is one reason why I and many of my colleagues are strongly resisting
package deals from the major publishers, which would in essence freeze a
larger and growing proportion of our funding into their list of titles.
The only way we can hope to get innovative material is to retain the
flexibility to deal with titles on an individual basis, and cancel if the
price becomes too wildly disproportunate to the use. 

David Goodman
Biology Librarian, Princeton University Library
phone: 609-258-3235            fax: 609-258-2627


Pete Goldie wrote:
> At 04:18 PM 4/12/98 -0400, you wrote:
> Dear Mark,
> Well done, your opinion on the anti-business slant of some of the
> commentary from librarians.  [...]
> I am continuously amazed at the demand of some librarians that I become a
> non-profit organization because any behavior otherwise is morally suspect.
> [ ... ]
> As the Internet and e-pub medias are purportedly an equalizer for small
> publishers, how come so few small publishers manage to survive producing
> quality titles?  That answer must address the maturity of market.. which
> to no small part is the librarians.  To them I say, show some purchasing
> discrimination, critical analysis of quality (both content and delivery
> media), and put your money where you mouth is.
> Like you, I have a very liberal policy of giving away CD-ROMs to teachers
> and worthy educational organizations.  On one title of ours, the "Darwin
> CD-ROM", I have given away over half as many as we have sold.  This title
> has received many exceptional reviews by scholars (not computer
> magazines), and how many libraries have purchased a network license?
> Why do academic libraries subscribe to Time, Newsweek and People anyway?
> All they seem to record is the failure of journalism.
> Pete Goldie
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