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November 1998, Week 1


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Webster Library <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Webster Library <[log in to unmask]>
Wed, 4 Nov 1998 10:07:46 -0600
TEXT/PLAIN (49 lines)
Andrea Berry, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins:

Thanks for your response.

In retrospect, I probably told my Office Manager to accept the offer of a
"sample copy".  We get several of those, unsolicited, during the year,
but with no in the mail druing the year, with no "strings" attached.
Yours was different, and I continue reffering to it as a "questionable
practice".  I credit our very well trained Office Manager for calling it
to my attention.

Yes, a follow up letter with a clearly identified _optional subscription
form_ would have been a LOT more appropriate than what your marketing
company did.

We are a small and very busy institutional library, and I avoid contact
with sales persons since these impose on my time.  Moreover, our journal
selection is highly dependent on in-house demonstrated need, and in response
to practioners' preferences.  Sending us sample copies is not an effective
promotional practice.  Most Health Science Libraries nowadays haavae very
limited funds and most are struggling just to keep up publishers' price
increases, to the exclusion of too many of the newly published titles.
Sending sample copies to the Specialists directly might more effective.
It also might provide you with a more valid assesment of interest, need,
and appropriatness of the journal price.

I also think it is about time that publishers re-think the
practice of launching more and more narrow topic journals, that
carry limited readership and even narrower per-article
utilization.  I have often wished to eliminate most of
the printed journal collection, providing there was a good, reliable and
fast way to securing sinlge needed articles fast, and a REASONABLE price.
Practitioners rely more and more on specific subject bibliographies
from Medline or Current Contents.  Most do not have the time to
read much more than the table of contents of even the journal that
they subscribe to directly.  Patient care reality dictates that they get
only what is needed, and secured fast, while the pateint is still in
the hospital, or in time for consultation before the office visit.

Dalia Kleinmuntz                                          847/570-2664
Webster Library                                      FAX: 847/570-2926
Evanston Hospital
2650 Ridge Ave
Evanston IL 60201                                 [log in to unmask]
"..the secret of the care of the patient is in caring for the patient"
                                                - Francis W. Peabody