|PRIVATE LAW LIBRARIES|
Katten Muchin Zavis Rosenman
I am interested in having future columns relate stories from other libraries on how they maintain records for the licensing of electronic products. Back in the days when floppies and CDs were the access avenues, your Automation Department could control who was set up with access. Now with web access, it is harder to retain control. We have had success with some companies by requiring them to accept registrations from either certain IP addresses or certain e-mails. Other companies accept all registrations and then we get a surprise bill. My question is, what have you done, or attempted to do, to keep track of the users of the web products? They can be either positive or negative on the attempts. I will compile answers for the next column. This is something that all libraries are encountering, so this does not necessarily need to be restricted to comments from the private law libraries.
The following are some examples of what some libraries have encountered to date:
We have one vendor that will only send invoices to the attorneys and not to the Library address. The attorneys do not forward the invoices to the Library. They ignore them. We have tried phone calls, faxing, snail mail and e-mail to try and communicate with the company. We have not found a reliable form of communication in order to receive the invoices from them. If we are able to request a duplicate invoice, it is again sent to the attorney and not to us. It is then ignored by the attorneys again. That is frustrating for the staff and for the attorneys. So much for automation making life simpler for me! As a result, the attorneys inform us that they have been cut off. We use our Serials system to keep a record of who are the valid subscribers.
We have found a wonderful contact person for our web accessible product. We are limited by a number of members. The Customer Service Representative is able to copy the Library Contact person with a notice of the subscription request. That way we are able to monitor the number of subscriptions. So far we have been able to stay within the limit of the number of subscribers. We feel very blessed to have this wonderful person. We use an EXCEL spreadsheet to keep a record of who has subscribed.
I am planning on not including names with the responses when they included in the column. Please send the positive and negative stories to: email@example.com or fax it to me at 312-577-8651.
This is a reminder that if you want to write a column, please let me know when it will be available. I can let you know which issue it will be in.