Ebsco Scoops Subscriptions, Major Magazines Turn Up Noses at Libraries

Via The Distant Librarian: “EBSCO is about to be the exclusive full text content provider for a whole lot of popular magazines.” Get thee over to the Distant Librarian’s site and take a gander at the titles. Painful, I say, just painful. And so I imagine libraries will now pay through the nose (even more) for content they may have been getting before.

From the same post, the observation that “The Major Magazines felt that they were losing subscribers because public library patrons were able to access their content w/o paying directly for a subscription… ” Well, I don’t see libraries who didn’t have Ebsco before running to get it yet, and given the library budget situation, I doubt it’ll happen anytime soon. So, Major Magazines, I hope you can make that Ebsco cash last. And while I know you’re not in the business out of the good of your hearts, that’s not a real nice image: “Ugh! Homeless and poor people want to read our stuff!” (Which, I will remind you, those libraries paid for access to.)

Prediction: ILL will go nuts. Libraries will frown at Ebsco. (This includes academics, since not everyone is on the Ebsco wagon.) Not many more will pay to switch from whatever they’ve got now to Ebsco due to hefty initial costs, and since they’re already cutting database access to get within their budgets. Those mags will be used and cited less. Sad pandas all around.

Dear Major Magazines: raping libraries for subscription costs is not going to undo the fact that you’re not selling as many paper copies in the age of the intarwebz.

Edit: Entry on Reference Staff Blog referring to Gale losses confirms this.

One comment

  1. Hi Colleen,

    Thank you for participating in and encouraging active discussion around the practice of exclusive licensing agreements and their potential impact on the library community.

    Pat Sommers, Gale’s president, has shared his perspective on the two core strategies adopted by leading aggregators today. Based on the content of this blog entry, we thought you might be interested in these new insights.


    Thanks again for joining the conversation.


    Harmony Faust
    Marketing Programs Manager
    Gale, a part of Cengage Learning


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