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Full-Image Articles Available from LEXIS-NEXIS; Per-Article Pricing for Elsevier Science Direct Material
Posted On August 31, 1998
Another major move toward the Web and intranets has begun by a major traditional search service. LEXIS-NEXIS ( has begun transferring components of new functionality added in its behind-the-scenes role as host for Elsevier Science Direct. Late in August, the company announced the addition of the Elsevier Science Business Journals to the main LEXIS-NEXIS service. The new group of journals will offer the standard full-text search and display capabilities of LEXIS-NEXIS documents. However, users may also click on a link marker to view and download a graphical version of the same articles, complete with charts, tables, and illustrations, designed to match the look of the original journal articles in print. Each article downloads as a single file in Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF), viewable using the Acrobat Reader available free from the Adobe Web site ( Initially only users of LEXIS-NEXIS' Session Manager 7.xx will have access to the PDF versions, but LEXIS-NEXIS plans to extend such access to Web versions in the very near future.

The new Elsevier Science Business Journals cover marketing, general business developments, and the social and technological environment. All but one extend from January 1997 to current. They include Industrial Marketing Management (INDMKT), International Review of Law and Economics (LAWECO; March 1997 to current), Journal of Business Research (BUSRES), Journal of Business Venturing (BUSVEN), Journal of Product Innovation Management (PRODIN), and Technological Forecasting and Social Change (TECHFR). The Electricity Journal (ELCJNL), already available on LEXIS-NEXIS as well as from Elsevier Science Direct, now offers the PDF format option as well.

We spoke to Jim King, the new vice president of NEXIS Market and Product Strategy. King's group liaises with the LEXIS-NEXIS Information Technology organization as well as with Reed Elsevier's Technology Group. King indicated that the new expansion into the PDF format is a basic technological component of a strategic expansion by LEXIS-NEXIS into the Internet and intranet arenas. Analysis of customer needs to search all the original source material--not just text, but also formulas, numbers, and the information inside graphs--drove the move, according to King.

Traditionally, King said, LEXIS-NEXIS has been seen as an archive aggregator, while adding some ability to customize, as with its Eclipse and Tracker current awareness options, and more recently with some Web delivery. In August the company released the Universe line on the Web, with more, if not all, of the full LEXIS-NEXIS collection scheduled for October release. King believes that LEXIS-NEXIS must move to developing customized solutions with products designed as intranet feeds.

The company also hopes to expand the linkages to LEXIS-NEXIS at an article-specific level with e-commerce Web sites, building on the "Tell Me More" service initiated in 1996. Beyond that, King says that LEXIS-NEXIS must become "a more integral part of our customers' information needs," reaching business desktops everywhere, including private databases. King wants to persuade customers and publishers both that they should turn to LEXIS-NEXIS for major online distribution of archival material because "we can do it better since we already have the core competencies in-house."

The new product developments also reflect a subject coverage expansion on the part of LEXIS-NEXIS, one that fits with the strengths of its owner, Reed-Elsevier. King pointed out that a check of LEXIS-NEXIS' content revealed that it has 1,453 titles in the science and technology areas scattered throughout multiple libraries. Early next year, it plans to organize a new set of libraries focused on the sci-tech area. It would then also plan to add abstracts and, later, full text for all the Elsevier Science Direct collection.

It's not only LEXIS-NEXIS that has demonstrated altered strategies in these announcements. Elsevier Science has shifted its ground as well. At present, all access to Elsevier Science Direct requires major annual commitments in subscription fees on a per-title basis. With LEXIS-NEXIS opening access to the same material in the same downloadable, full-featured PDF format, Elsevier Science has basically opened a per-article payment route to its material.

Barbara Quint was senior editor of Online Searcher, co-editor of The Information Advisor’s Guide to Internet Research, and a columnist for Information Today.

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