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The Harvard University Gazette reports on cuts to Elsevier journals at Harvard. According to Sidney Verba, Carl H. Pforzheimer University Professor and director of the University Library, the decision to eliminate these journals was the result of 15 months of careful consideration. "It was driven not only by current financial realities," Verba states, "but also - and perhaps more importantly - by the need to reassert control over our collections and to encourage new models for research publication at Harvard." Similar steps have been taken at other major research institutions, including Cornell, Johns Hopkins, and the Triangle Research Libraries Network.
nbruce writes "A survey of popular magazinesâ€™ nutrition articles shows some improvement in accuracy after 20 years of tracking this information, according to the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH). The
survey, which covered magazines published in 2000, 2001, and 2002, ranked 16 of 20 magazines as "good" sources of nutrition information, two magazines were rated "fair," and two earned a rating of "poor." Magazines aimed at men are still more likely to be rated fair or poor. Although the overall quality of articles improved, for the first time, no magazine was rated â€œexcellentâ€? in nutrition information.
The percentage of readers who reported getting nutrition information from magazines substantially increased from the last survey. You can either download the survey, or purchase it in hard copy."
Rumor has it the editorial board of Elsevier's Journal of Algorithms has stepped down due to "the prices being charged by commercial publishers of scientific journals."
In October Professor Don Knuth wrote a fantastic long letter to the editorial board of the Journal of Algorithms, explaining the current state of affairs. He has it on his web site (Look for "Crisis in Scientific Publishing") with hopes that it will be helpful to anybody else who is trying to deal with this serious problem.
note: if this was just rumor I wouldn't post it, but I've not been able to find an "official announcement" yet, I was told to watch SIGACT News for the final word.
Norma sent over This Transcript of Colloquy Live about open access at Chronicle of Higher Education web site. Interview with Peter Suber of Earlham College.
After hundreds of years in which scientific publishers have based their business models on charging subscribers, could a fundamental change be just around the corner in this $3.5-billion-a-year industry? If so, how will the new journals affect researchers, librarians, and publishers?
Walt writes "Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large 4:3 (February 2004) is now available
The 22-page issue (PDF) includes:
* Bibs & Blather: An ALA Question (have you been told that an open meeting was closed?), brief Midwinter items
* Trends & Quick Takes: Who makes the fastest PC, PC reliability, and quick takes on a variety of topics
* Feedback: Your Insights [3+ pages!]
* Perspective: The Way We're Wired
* PC Progress, July 2003-January 2004
* A Copyright Perspective: Compulsory Licensing
* The Library Stuff: eight items
* Interesting & Pecular Products: 14 in all"
A study reported in January's D-Lib Magazine finds that the auxiliary "costs of the electronic format are consistently and substantially lower than those of the print format." Each of the eleven academic libraries in the study calculated a lower total life-cycle maintenance cost for electronic serial titles - the print versions on average cost over four times more. The price savings of e-journals was covered previously.
gayle writes points us to this week's "Intelligencer" (New York magazine) column:
Two New Yorker staffers drove a sixteen-foot Ryder truck with two issues of every New Yorker (founded 1925) from 4 Times Square to Kansas. The truck, which was supposed to transport the magazineâ€™s library index cards, too, was allegedly going to be insured for a whopping $11 million. The price was, however, reduced substantially when the cards were axed. The purpose of the trip was to get the magazine digitally archived. And the drivers, Matt Dellinger (Website manager) and Willing Davidson (fiction department) were a tad anxious about the precious cargo.
This 20-page issue (PDF as always),
Volume 4 Issue 2, Midwinter 2004,
has one article or 98 "articles," depending on your perspective:
A is for AAC: A Discursive Glossary
98 expansions and essays on abbreviations and terms, including the following key terms:
broadcast flag, compulsory licensing, copyleft, copyright, DMCA, DVD, Eldred Act, fair use, KTD, open access, OpenURL, PASA, public domain, RSS, scholarly access, swamping, top technology trend, weblogs"
Update: 01/02 16:16 EST by B:"L is for LISNews... The most important multi-author weblog in the library community"Thanks Walt, you're too kind!
Walt Crawford writes "Sorry for the late notice, but:
Cites & Insights: Crawford at Large 4:1 (January 2004) is now available for downloading at
This 26-page issue, PDF as usual (sorry, but there will be some bigger-than-20-page issues this year) includes the following: