What Happens When a Journal Title is Cancelled?

It’s complicated.

The University Libraries’ have finished the journal cancellation process and sent the resulting cancellations to our vendors. Although cancellations are difficult, we appreciate the input that we received from faculty members as we identified titles to cancel. The Libraries cancelled about 285 titles costing over $500,000. Cancellations were spread across disciplines. A complete list of the cancelled titles can be found here.

When the library cancels an online journal subscription, we lose access to new content published after the cancellation. Most of the University Libraries’ subscriptions run on a calendar year, so our access to new content ends on December 31. However, with few exceptions, our licenses guarantee us continued access to content published during the years we had a subscription.

Example:

The Libraries subscribed to the online version of International Journal of Plant Sciences from 2007-2018. Beginning in 2019, we will still have access to content published between 2007 and 2018, but we will not have access to new content from 2019 forward.

Short Backfiles:

It is common for publishers to give libraries complementary access to short backfiles of titles to which they have current online subscriptions. In those cases, when the library cancels subscriptions, it loses access to the short backfiles as well.

Example:

Using International Journal of Plant Sciences again, the publisher gave complementary access to content back to 1998 with the library’s current subscription. After cancellation, the library will retain access to the subscribed years (2007-2018), but will lose access to the years 1998-2006.

Full-Text Content in Aggregator Databases:

Journal content is often available in aggregated databases such as Ebsco’s Academic Search Complete, although new content may be subject to an embargo. While this access is not guaranteed (publishers can stop providing their content or the library could cancel the database subscription), this access can reduce the impact of losing access to short backfiles and allow ongoing access to new content, albeit with a delay.

Example:

International Journal of Plant Sciences has full-text coverage in Academic Search Complete from the year 1993 forward with a 1-year embargo on new content.  Now, post-cancellation, the loss of the short backfile is not an issue and new content will become available with a one-year delay.

Full-Text Content in JSTOR Archives:

Unlike content in aggregator databases, JSTOR is a permanent archive of journal content. It also provides coverage for all of the titles included back to the first volume and issue.

Example:

International Journal of Plant Sciences is included in JSTOR’s Life Sciences Archive Collection. There is a four-year embargo on new content, but content under the current title and the previous titles (Botanical Bulletin and Botanical Gazette) is available back to volume 1 published in 1875 with a four-year embargo.

What’s the Bottom Line?

For International Journal of Plant Sciences, after cancellation we will continue to have access to all content with a one-year embargo on new content.

For current content of this journal and for access to content from all of the journals the Libraries have been forced to cancel, interlibrary loan services will be available. For more information on interlibrary loan, see the Libraries’ website and our earlier blog post.

Have Questions?

Our librarians are available to help you navigate journal access.  Please direct other comments and questions to Karen Wilhoit (karen.wilhoit@wright.edu; 775-3039).

This entry was posted in News, Services. Bookmark the permalink.