LOC stocking electronic journals

The Library of Congress is set to acquire its first complete set of electronic journal archives as part of a data-sharing agreement with a national physics organization.

The American Physical Society, a 42,000-member organization that produces several electronic journals, will begin sending LOC archives from eight physics journals this month. LOC will store the archives as a backup for the APA and make them available to its visitors.

"Publishers are attracted by the idea of having secondary sites for protection of their assets," Winston Tabb, associate librarian for library services, said in a release. "At the same time, libraries are concerned about saving memory as well as making intellectual creation available for scholars. This project addresses both issues."

In exchange for hosting the database, LOC will be able to provide its visitors access to an extensive set of digital archives that are continually updated, said Nancy Davenport, LOC's director of acquisitions.

The archive will enable researchers to track historical developments in physics, Davenport said. Article footnotes link to past articles, and because every issue is electronic, researchers won't need to track down hard copies, she said.

LOC will make the archives, which date back more than 100 years, available only to those visiting its buildings. To ensure that the journals remain profitable, their publishers requested that free Internet access not be provided.

Davenport said the APA already maintains an active mirror site for its electronic archives that it can use during routine server maintenance, for example. The APA would access LOC's copy of the archives only in the event of a major system glitch, she said.

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