Re: Congress Acts to Shut Down Government Web Site Used for Journals Research

From: Steve Hitchcock <sh94r_at_ECS.SOTON.AC.UK>
Date: Fri, 17 Aug 2001 15:36:28 +0100

Mary Jean Johnson's notice about PubScience is out of date. According to
the latest issue of the Free Online Scholarship Newsletter 8/16/01

"... the Senate has rejected the House measure and restored PubScience
funding in its own recent spending bill. Next month the House and Senate
must agree on a final version of the bill."

  Andrea Foster, Senate Bill Offers Tacit Approval of Scholarly Web Portal
  Scorned by House

You'll need a subscription to the Chronicle to view this item as it's not
part of the free section.

Steve Hitchcock
Open Citation (OpCit) Project <>
IAM Research Group, Department of Electronics and Computer Science
University of Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK
Tel: +44 (0)23 8059 3256 Fax: +44 (0)23 8059 2865

At 12:34 17/08/01 +0100, wrote:
>This article from The Chronicle of Higher Education
>( was forwarded to you from:
>The following message was enclosed:
> Dear Sir, I will be writing to you
> concerning the NTIS dissemination plan,
> Kind regards,
> Mary Jean Johnson
> Cape Town
> South Africa
> email: (h)
> (w)
> From the issue dated July 20, 2001
> Congress Acts to Shut Down Government Web Site Used for
> Journals Research
> A Web site operated by the U.S. Energy Department that allows
> scientists to search journals for citations and abstracts in
> the physical sciences is in jeopardy because of a bill
> approved last month by the House of Representatives. The bill
> is accompanied by a report that recommends eliminating the
> service.
> The service, PubScience, allows researchers to examine more
> than 1,000 peer-reviewed journals free and at the same time,
> instead of searching multiple Web sites, publications, and
> references (
> PubScience is the Energy Department's most popular Web portal,
> receiving millions of search requests a year, said Walter
> Warnick, director of the department's Office of Scientific and
> Technical Information. The department spends about a
> half-million dollars a year to operate it.
> However, a report accompanying the Energy Department's 2002
> appropriations bill, H.R. 2311, asks the department "to
> carefully review its information services such as PubScience
> to be sure that such efforts remain focused on appropriate
> scientific journals."
> A House aide said that the service also competes with private
> companies that index scientific journals.
> The report, which was written by the House Appropriations
> Committee, mirrors his remark.
> The Energy Department is not legally required to abide by the
> report. But the cautionary language combined with steep budget
> cuts for the department's technical-management program make
> eliminating the service a foregone conclusion if the bill is
> signed into law, an Energy Department official said.
> The Senate is expected to approve a comparable spending bill
> for the Department of Energy, but it is unclear whether its
> legislation will include similar language on PubScience.
> The PubScience text was inserted in the House report after
> lobbying by the Software & Information Industry Association on
> behalf of member companies, including Chemical Abstracts
> Services, Reed Elsevier, and Cambridge Scientific Abstracts,
> according to the association.
> "The Department of Energy has entered into the role of
> secondary publishers," said David LeDuc, a lobbyist for the
> software association. "There's existing private-sector
> services. We would like to have the public sector stop
> competing with these services."
> But Stephen Miles Sacks, editor and publisher of Scipolicy --
> The Journal of Science and Health Policy, said PubScience is
> the only Web service that compiles abstracts from about 19
> small, niche scientific publications, including his.
> He called the House action "irresponsible and damaging to the
> advancement of science and medicine."
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>Copyright 2001 by The Chronicle of Higher Education
Received on Wed Jan 03 2001 - 19:17:43 GMT

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