Electronic Serials Management (Michelle Sitko) ERCELAA@ctrvax.Vanderbilt.Edu 06 Aug 2001 19:50 UTC

Date: Mon, 06 Aug 2001 15:33:24 -0400
From: "Sitko, Michelle" <sitko@ES.MARYWOOD.EDU>
Subject: Electronic Serials Management (Michelle Sitko)

At a recent Electronic Serials Management Demo Day at PALINET in
Philadelphia, regional librarians were introduced to three innovative
serials management tools at discounted prices to members:  1) Serials
Solutions http://www.serialssolutions.com <http://www.serialssolutions.com>
, 2) Journal WebCite http://www.JournalWebCite.com
<http://www.JournalWebCite.com>  and 3) TDNet  http://www.tdnet.com

Serials Solutions, being the leader in the industry and the first to start
this type of product struck me as a reliable and inexpensive alternative to
organizing and managing your library's titles.  They have been servicing
libraries for over a year now and currently have over 200 partner libraries.
Serials Solutions seemed comparable to JournalWebCite's Journal List-LIGHT
product.  However, because of SS's searching and some reporting limitations
we, at Marywood University, are planning to give JournalWebCite's (JWC)
slightly higher priced Journal List- STANDARD product a try for a few basic
reasons. Without going into too much detail (and please correct me if I am
making any misleading assertions), Journal WebCite will allow our patrons to
search print, microform, and electronic full text titles under broad subject
headings (they also plan to add Ulrich's Subject headings--which is better
than no established taxonomy), whereas Serials Solutions (SS) is currently
designed to be approached with a specific citation in hand.  JWC's STANDARD
product also has more useful and readily available statistical reporting
capabilities, including one that allows you to easily ascertain overlap of
titles in various aggregate products, which will aid us in future collection
management decisions. It can link to your OPAC "if" it supports static urls.
If not, it will at least go to the search screen. Unlike the other two, this
product is maintained on THEIR server (which is a form of outsourcing that
your institution may/may not endorse).  They have not experienced problems
with regard to downtime but pledge we will be credited for a full 24 hours
if they are down for more than15 minutes...which leads me to remind everyone
that they are a fledging company.  JWC also offers a higher end product
called Journal List-ULTIMATE but it is way out of our price range.

We are hoping to have JWC in place for the upcoming Fall semester. For the
price, this evolving product seems worth a try if it does all that it
promises.  We're willing to give it a go as it won't break our piggy bank
nor our hearts if we were to discover something newer, better, and
affordable on the market down the line.  Also, since we are a smaller
institution that offers access to a considerable number of aggregate
products, basing their price on FTE seems to work in our favor.  In any
case, this will be a DEFINITE improvement over what we've been doing over
the past year and a half, i.e. culling excel files of titles from aggregate
product websites that we subscribe to, merging them, and arduously de-duping
them to produce one integrated list of print, microform, and electronic
titles.  Seems like with a little bit of work and ingenuity, WE could have
developed this product ourselves if only we had the time! (which is one of
the reasons this product holds so much promise for us).

Of course, I wish we could consider a product such as TDNet that promises to
offer a customized FULL-service journals management service.  They claim to
handle remote access links to journal sites as well as negotiate site
license agreements for institutions and consortia (though one is left
wondering about how this can actually all "really" work on an individual/
institutional basis), work with protected IP addresses, make payments to
publishers, load any subject taxonomy you wish, including LC Subject
Headings, etc.etc.--but this product comes with a substantially higher price
tag.  TDNet apparently began in August 2000, and then spun off of Tel Dan
(an Israeli company that began in the mid 70's) to form an independent
company in February 2001.  I understand their primary customers have been
corporate, medical centers, government, hi-tech, academic libraries,
consortia and information centers in Europe, Israel, Japan and Latin
American countries and only now are trying to break into the US market.

As indicated in a few earlier emails on this subject,  I also hope this
becomes a regular topic of discussion on our list.  Given the speed of
developments in technology, there seem to be fewer and fewer readily
available guideposts to follow.  The sharing of your insights and
experiences on these timely topics will, hopefully, help us all make more
informed and cost-effective decisions with regard to this sort of much
needed service!

*****   ***  *****  ***   *****   ***    *****  ***
Michelle Sitko
Coordinator of Collection Management Services/Serials Learning Resources
Marywood University
2300 Adams Avenue
Scranton, PA  18509-1598
Voice: (570) 340-6034
Fax: (570) 961-4769
Email: sitko@ac.marywood.edu
University URL: http://www.marywood.edu <http://www.marywood.edu/>