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11.07.2019 | SSP News & Releases

TSK Webinar Preview | The Future of Content Distribution: Licensing or Leakage

Don’t miss the last SSP webinar of 2019 – The Scholarly Kitchen‘s “The Future of Content Distribution: Licensing or Leakage,” on Tuesday, November 19, 2019, at 11am EST. Registration for the event remains open with a discount available for SSP members.


Journal articles are leaking from publisher platforms — from repositories, scholarly collaboration networks, and pirate sites. As a result, a declining share of usage is taking place on the publisher site. More importantly, a declining share is attributable to the library sales channel, as a result of which the value of the licensed content bundle may be under pressure. In this webinar, we will examine how publishers and librarians are thinking about these issues and some of the steps, from litigation to partnership development, they are taking to secure their businesses for the future.

Roger Schonfeld (Directory, Libraries, Scholarly Communication, and Museums, Ithaka S+R) will moderate the event and is joined on the panel by Jonathan Austin (Director of Product Management, Springer Nature), Todd Toler (Vice President, Product Strategy & Partnerships, John Wiley & Sons), and Elaine Westbrooks (Vice Provost for University Libraries & University Librarian, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill).

Roger kindly took the time to answer questions about the event:

Who is the intended audience for this webinar and why should they attend?

We’ve developed this session to discuss key strategic issues in the scholarly publishing sector today. It will not only be of interest to individuals involved in library relations, business development, and strategy for traditional publishers but also for many academic librarians and platform leaders as well.

Why do you think this topic is important and timely?

We are seeing substantial change to traditional publishing businesses by leakage — the growing practice for users to access articles through platforms outside the library sales channel. This is opening up all sorts of dilemmas for publishers and opportunities for libraries. We are going to get at the heart of these issues during the webinar.

Is there a particular topic you’re looking forward to seeing discussed?

All leakage is not equal. And our perceptions of its risk and opportunity varies according to our institutional and professional affiliations and allegiances. I’m much looking forward to exploring these differences, not only between library and publisher but also among publishers.

What do the selected speakers bring to the discussion?

We are fortunate to have three of the leading thinkers on these issues joining us. Elaine Westbrooks has been leading UNC Chapel Hill’s library to engage ever more strategically on collections issues, as their recent pilot agreement with SAGE suggests. And Jonathan Austin and Todd Toler have each been developing product and strategic engagements for two of the largest publishing houses, but with diverging perspectives that I am looking forward to exploring.

What can attendees expect from the webinar?

I am expecting a collegial but robust discussion about leakage and its affordances.

What do you hope attendees will take away from the webinar?

We all will learn together about some of the leading strategic issues facing our community, some of the “story behind the story” when we hear about Sci-Hub, ResearchGate, and transformative agreements.

Please join us! Click here to register now. Thank you to our sponsor, Web of Science Group.


News contribution by SSP member, Nicola Poser. Nicola is Director of Marketing and Sales at the American Mathematics Society.

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