Four IOP Journals Move to Taylor & Francis - Commentary by Dana Roth
:: There has been ongoing dialog regarding the transfer of four IoP journals to Taylor & Francis. David Stern (Yale) provided comments, and Steve Moss (IoP) responded. Dana Roth (Caltech), continues the discussion, and writes the following on SLA-PAM:
I first want to express my appreciation to the IOP for all it has done over the years for SLA-PAM. The sale of the four titles to T&F, however, reminded me of a tangential issue that has been bothering me for some time.
I have spoken about differential journal pricing for several years now, and it is not an issue unique to commercial European publishers. For example, the 2004 British Pound price for IOP package Z was £25,894 while the US$ price was US$49,798. There are several ways to calculate a reasonable exchange rate and a corresponding reasonable US$ price.
1. Elsevier, prior to 2000, calculated their US$ subscription rates based on the average exchange rate for the 07/01-6/30 period prior to announcing subscription rates, a few months later, for the next calendar year.
2. An alternative, that was offered by Harrassowitz in the past, was to allow payment (in US$) at the exchange rate in effect on the day when the invoice was paid (i.e. for institutions on the 10/01-9/30 fiscal year, in October 2003).
If either of these practices had been employed by the IOP, for their 2004 prices, the exchange rate (and US$ price) would have been:
1. (07/01/02-06/30/03) US$ 1.586 = 1£ --- $41,068
2. (10/01/03-10/31/03) US$ 1.677 = 1£ --- $43,424
Comparison of these prices, with the $49,798 charged, suggests that US$
subscribers are paying at least a 15% surcharge over a reasonable exchange rate subscription price.
If the IOP is not prepared to reduce the Package Z subscription rate in 2005, would it be too much to expect them to meet us half way and also not increase the US$ subscription rate?
Dana L. Roth
Millikan Library / Caltech 1-32
1200 E. California Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91125
626-395-6423 fax 626-792-7540
dzrlib AT library DOT caltech.edu