Re: Disappearing microform titles (Peter V. Picerno) Marcia Tuttle 06 Sep 2001 15:40 UTC

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Thu, 6 Sep 2001 09:53:01 -0500
From: Peter V. Picerno <ppicerno@UTMEM.EDU>
Subject: Re: Disappearing microform titles (2 messages)

        The points of both postings below are well taken: economics
certainly plays a major part in publisher's decisions. Economics also play
a part in library decisions. I wonder, then, when one considers the
following points whether the abandonment of microfilm is something to be
met with so gleefully (and let me hastily add that I'm not enamored of
microforms -- but I do think that they've proven to be a sturdy means of
preserving informatio):

        1. Is a one-time expenditure for a film, even counting the storage
and maintenance costs, going to be less advantageous or more advantageous
than a long-term annually renewable 'lease' for the same information in a
highly changable (i.e., www) format where access and use restrictions can
be added annually 'at will' by the publisher/vendor/aggregator?

        2. Will the web formats be 'perpetually' accessible (or at least
as perpetually accessible as microforms are?)?

        3. How will recent court decisions affect the content of a www
version of a journal or newspaper versus a mocrofilm version? What of new
decisions regarding formats and copyrights?

        As usual, there are more questions than answers: and unless we can
accurately predict the future -- or try to influence the shaping of the
future -- we'll be left to deal with an 'after the fact' scenario.

Peter Picerno

-----Original Message-----
From: SERIALST: Serials in Libraries Discussion Forum
[mailto:SERIALST@LIST.UVM.EDU]On Behalf Of Marcia Tuttle
Sent: Thursday, September 06, 2001 9:05 AM
Subject: Disappearing microform titles (2 messages)

Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 21:13:51 -0400
From: Albert Henderson <chessNIC@COMPUSERVE.COM>
Subject: Re: Disappearing microform titles... (Noreen Fish)

While I cannot actually speak for any specific publisher
mentioned below, I can suggest that the main reason for
cancelling microforms is probably economic: they aren't
paying for themselves. From most publishers' point of view,
the market deserves what it is willing to pay for. If the
"publishers had decided not to continue to pay for microform,"
it is likely that they had not gotten reasonable returns on
their investments.

Perhaps if "the market" were more robust (less impoverished),
format options would be increasing.

Best wishes,

Albert Henderson

Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 21:43:49 -0600
From: Dan Lester <>
Subject: Re: Disappearing microform titles (2 messages)

The point is that UMI/Proquest can't microfilm them without permission
of the publisher.  It is the publishers that have withdrawn the
permission for the filming to be done.  As noted by the comment from
my colleague, Lisa, the publishers of at least one journal think
they've done us a service by putting the archive on the web.  If it is
the full content and will be maintained, I'd agree with them.  It
would save me from even paying for or storing the film.


Wednesday, September 05, 2001, 6:25:57 PM, you wrote:

> Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 09:01:46 -0500
> From: Peter V. Picerno <ppicerno@UTMEM.EDU>
> Subject: Re: Disappearing microform titles... (Noreen Fish)

> I would suggest that the publisher is not the agency to contact in this
> instance -- or regarding microfilming in general -- since preservation of
> their material is usually one of the last things on their mind. Contacting
> the microfilming agancies, such as Bell & Howell (aka UMI), and pleading
> case with them would probably yield better results since it has been their
> business in the past to supply libraries with the means of preserving this
> information.

> Peter Picerno

Dan Lester, Data Wrangler
3577 East Pecan, Boise, Idaho  83716-7115 USA  Stop Global Whining!