EBSCO is a massive database/content provider that most people ONLY access through their public libraries or school libraries. They collect a massive amount of information and have recently acquired rights to several magazines to put online in full-text:
[from The Distant Librarian] Nothing new really, many databases own exclusive rights to books, magazines, publishers, etc. This prevents competition and allows them to charge whatever they want. Is it crummy yes, but it isn’t illegal. But what really gets my goat is this from “The Major Magazines” :
The Major Magazines felt that they were losing subscribers because public library patrons were able to access their content w/o paying directly for a subscription.
Brilliant move, blame the public library when they should point the finger at themselves and their antiquated business models. The economy is doing poorly and people/businesses will pay for content that is relevant and not free. All the titles mentioned are no match for the amount of FREE information available on the Internet. I can read about sports, money, business, gossip, science, and much more in detailed and fulfilling ways. The commentary on the Internet is also more enjoyable than the major magazines’. I don’t know the numbers, but when I worked in the public library people weren’t lining up to get the latest Times or asking when the next issue of Forbes was coming.
Maybe, just maybe, they are loosing subscribers because print magazines cost money and people are measuring the value of their dollar more than ever. Print subscriptions to major topics don’t make much sense if you have an Internet connection. Offer the content online for free with ads and offer the print to libraries and the few who want it. And if you want to stick with print- find a niche a very developed and specific niche and go for it. I can name a handful of cycling and business magazines that are area and subject specific, beating out web sources; however, they maintain an online presence that compliments the print. Major mags have the name power to secure massive online hits and advertisement deals, accusing public libraries for revenue loss is a weak and desperate move.