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The Content Fragmentation Paradigm: Reshaping the Agent’s Role and Its Relationships with Publishers and Vendors. Tina Feick, Swets Vice President, Customer Relations May 17, OVGTSL 2007 Annual Conference. Agenda. The changing electronic environment and its impact

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The Content Fragmentation Paradigm: Reshaping the Agent’s Role and Its Relationships with Publishers and Vendors

Tina Feick, Swets Vice President, Customer Relations

May 17, OVGTSL 2007 Annual Conference

  • The changing electronic environment and its impact
  • How this is reshaping the agent’s role
  • How this new role is driving new relationships
  • Putting new roles and relationships into action, driving:
    • Standards
    • Interoperability
    • Efficiency
    • Transparency
the changing environment
The changing environment
  • Rapid expansion of e-content = greater complexity:
  • Changing the way content produce generate, package and supply information
    • New publisher pricing models and packages
    • Wide ranging licensing and rights management policies
    • Growing content fragmentation
  • New challenges for libraries to provide comprehensive electronic access and meet changing user expectations
  • Libraries lack the time and resources
  • Compounded by a lack of overall standards, consistency and transparency
  • Result:
  • Need for greater efficiency and transparency
  • Value now defined by: usage, impact factors, timeliness, and customer specific performance indicators
the long tail
The Long Tail
  • Chris Anderson - Original article in Wired Magazine (October 2005) expanding into his book The Long Tail:
    • 80/20 rule: 80% of revenue is generated by 20% of products
    • But…in an electronic world where physical inventory is not a key factor, the 80/20 rule loses its meaning
    • When inventory is limitless or near limitless, the options for customers do not shrink but rather expand

As a business model the Long Tail can be summed up…

“…the biggest money is in the smallest sales”

- Keith Laws, Venture Capitalist

the long tail and libraries
The Long Tail and libraries
  • Information Discovery is the key to producing a LongTail—if consumers are able to discover the content, then there will be interest
  • Katherine Mossman (Library Journal, July, 2006) points out that in the Long Tail model, librarians and libraries play a key role
    • Libraries act as almost limitless inventory collections
    • Librarians act as search filters
    • Collection management by librarians is a constant work in progress

“Filters are people or software that help you find what you want in the long tail, driving demand from hits to niches”

- Chris Anderson

the long tail and scholarly content
The Long Tail and scholarly content
  • Electronic content offerings almost limitless content types, publishers and consumers
  • Global information marketplace reach a global audience
  • Indexes, impact factors, publication types:
    • generate “Hits” or “Best Sellers” that drive the publishing world
    • but this model is changing

Shift from content is king to customer is king; customers’ usage statistics will determine what they want to buy

what this means for agents
What this means for agents

Agent must now be an efficient, effective conduit connecting content users and content producers

  • Agent’ Unique Position: View of the whole e-resource supply chain








  • Neutral party serving the needs of libraries and publishers
  • Supporting e-resources to facilitate greater efficiency and improved access
  • Possess essential information needed by libraries and publishers
  • Working with publishers/platform providers to gather info
reshaping the agents role
Agent Service Suite:

Subscription Management

E-Service Components

Connectivity & Interoperability

Definitive Data Source


Reshaping the agents role

Expanded role in reducing complexity and driving efficiency

  • Neutral definitive data source
  • Exchange data with ERAMs, publishers, platform providers and other 3rd party agents
  • Assume expanded role in standardization on metadata
    • Ensure cross-industry Interoperability
    • Reduce data duplication
  • This requires standards
  • and partners!
reshaping the agents role9
Reshaping the agents role

Meeting the challenge: what agents are tracking

  • Increased staff to track e-information including pricing:
  • Specialists in e-world
  • Plus more Publisher Relations staff
  • Added fields to record e-data elements:
  • URL
  • Activation instructions
  • License and/or terms and conditions
  • Publisher profile:
  • E-contact person/department
  • Platform provider – ingenta, Atypon, Metapress
  • Account profile:
  • E-contact person
  • IP address and domain address
  • Upgrade defaults
  • Tier levels
  • Increased costs:
  • Added and higher level staff
  • Training
  • Computer programming
  • E-product development
reshaping the agents role10
Reshaping the agents role

Must also provide e-resource tools that maximize access to

and usage of carefully acquired content

  • Online subscription management and procurement
  • Federated Search
  • E-journal gateway conduit to full text content
  • Customized A-Z listing of entire print and electronic holdings
  • OpenURL Linking, and more…
new agent role new relationships
New agent role = new relationships
  • E-resources are here to stay—they are not going away
  • We must live through the complex stuff—jump in, learn, and absorb in order to transition to a simpler stage
  • We must simplify through the creation of standards
  • Standards lead to interoperability which leads to efficiencies

All of this is driving new relationships between agents, publishers, vendors and industry associations to create: standards, interoperability, transparency and efficiency for greater digital access

making it happen sushi and lewg
Making it happen: SUSHI and LEWG
  • NISO (National Information Standards Organization):
  • SUSHI – Standardize Usage Statistics Harvesting Initiative
  • - Innovative, ExLibris, Swets, EBSCO, Cornell University
  • - Request and send usage statistics – RAW DATA
  • - NOW Z39.93
  • License Expression Work Group (Based on DLF work)
  • - Defining elements of license to record in ERM
  • - Standard license
  • Results = Increased Interoperability
sushi and new vendor partnerships in action
SUSHI and new vendor partnerships in action
  • Wayne State University Libraries successfully implemented SUSHI protocol with Innovative Interfaces and Swets
  • Can now use Innovative's ERM system to automatically load COUNTER- compliant usage statistics from Swets’ e-journal gateway on a scheduled basis via web services
  • By combining usage statistics with payment data:
    • Innovative's ERM automatically calculates cost-per-use analysis
    • Saves immense time and effort and helps maximize subscription investment
  • Before implementing SUSHI:
    • Staff had to go to more than 50 publisher websites
    • download statistics from each publisher
    • then change them into an analyzable format
making it happen serials onix icedis
Making it happen: Serials ONIX & ICEDIS
  • Joint Working Party – EDItEUR/DLF/NISO/PLS
  • Serials ONIX:
  • XML standard for data exchange between agents, publishers and Electronic Resource Management (ERM) systems. Includes:
    • Serials Holdings Information (A-Z information)
    • Serials Release Notification (new issues)
    • Serials Products and Subscriptions
    • Licensing Criteria – ONIX Publisher License Format Subscription details, title lists and pricing
    • Populate ERM fields
  • ICEDIS (International Committee for the EDI of Serials):
  • Publishers and subscription agents
  • Standard for sending orders from agents to publishers
  • Now includes e-profile of customer
    • IP ranges
    • E-contact
making it happen institutional registry title transfer
Journal Supply Chain Efficiency Improvement Pilot Project (JSCEI): Registration/Activation

British Library, Highwire Press, Swets, Ringgold

Explore common institutional identifier throughout chain

Released mid-year report

Extending pilot project through 2007

Approaching NISO to form standards committee

Links and hierarchies

OCLC Worldcat Registry – healthy competition??

UKSG (United Kingdom Serials Group) Transfer Working

Establish Code of Practice for the movement of publications from one publisher to another (-package to package)

Library Issues: URL links; perpetual access rights; Journal prices

Publisher Issues: Differing ownership of backfiles; need to maintain links

Compliancy – similar to Counter – with audits

Making it happen: Institutional Registry & Title Transfer
making it happen seru
Making it happen: SERU
  • Shared EResources Understanding (SERU)
  • A major step—please pay attention
  • Sponsors: ARL, ALPSP, SSP and SPARC
  • http:/
  • Simplified form of licensing for libraries and publishers
  • Agreed terms and conditions
  • Focus groups held at ALA MidWinter
  • Draft document available
  • How it works—simplify!
  • Forego license and rely on shared understanding
  • Purchase order is acquisitions vehicle
  • Orders placed through vendors such as subscription agents and consortia
  • SERU posted on NISO website
  • NISO registry for librarians and publishers
usage statistics project counter
Usage Statistics – PROJECT COUNTER
  • Counting Online Usage of Networked Electronic Resources
  • - Consistent way of counting usage
  • - Codes of Practice

- Code for Journals and Databases – Release 2 – April 2005

- Code for Books and Reference Works – Release 1 – March 2006

  • - Specifies content, format and delivery specifications of usage reports
  • - Reports must be supplied free of charge
  • - Reports must meet auditing standards
  • - Various journal reports – Full-text, Turnaways, Database Searches
making it happen vendor partnerships
Making it happen: vendor partnerships

Agent Partnership with ScholarlyStats:

  • Web-based portal, providing a single point of access to an organization’s usage statistics from multiple content providers
  • Aggregates usage data into overviews and reports on a monthly basis
  • Allows organizations to easily analyze usage statistics per journal, per publisher, per database, and per platform in COUNTER compliant formats


making it happen agent publisher partnerships
Making it happen: agent & publisher partnerships
  • ALPSP Learned Journals Collection (ALJC)
  • Unique partnership between the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers (ALPSP) and Agent (Swets)
  • 627 e-journals from 48 highly respected smaller and medium-sized publishers
  • Choose the entire collection or select from nine subject specific packages
  • How Libraries Benefit:
  • Enables direct, affordable acquisition of high quality content from a wide range of publishers
  • Provides the simplicity a single order, license and pricing model, eliminating the hassle of dealing with complex e-pricing models and multiple publishers
  • Gain instant access
  • Rapid expansion of e-content =
    • Growing content fragmentation and complexity
    • The Long Tail – libraries play key role; impacts content producers
    • Agent must be efficient effective conduit connecting content users and producers
  • New e-environment is reshaping the agents role:
    • Uniquely positioned—neutral party serving needs of libraries and publishers
    • Expanded role in reducing complexity and driving efficiency
    • Means exchanging data with ERAMS, publishers, platform providers and vendors

- standards and partners needed

    • Must provide e-resource tools to maximize access to and usage of valuable content
  • New role = new relationships:
    • Must simplify through creation of standards, leading to greater interoperability and efficiency
    • Driving new relationships between agents, publishers, vendors and associations to create: standards, transparency and efficiency
all done thank you may your e experiences be bright
All Done! Thank you!May your e-experiences be bright!
  • Tina Feick
  • Vice President, Customer Relations
  • Swets Information Services
  • 160 Ninth Avenue
  • Runnemede, New Jersey 08078
  • Phone: 1-800-645-6595, ext. 2238
  • Fax: 1-856-632-7238
  • Email: [email protected]