Statistics Are Operative
has now been integrated with the general on-line-usage statistics reporting
system maintained by the Univ. of Mich. (UofM) Library System’s Digital
Library Production Services (DLPS). DLPS provides this service to our main
partner, Michigan’s Scholarly Publishing Office (UofM-SPO).
Your library’s separate statistics can be found at www.stats.umdl.umich.edu. You will be able to use this service to see the average use and total use for all subscribers, and then the statistics specific to your firm or institution. Statistics have been maintained for LLMC-Digital subscribers since November. You will be given the option of delimiting the time frame for which you want reports. The stats system will recognize your IP or password as you access it, so that the statistics provided will be for your library only. No other subscriber will have access to your statistics.
LLMC-Digital subscribers should be alert to the fact that this statistics reporting site was developed to track usage statistics for all of the digital collections maintained by the Univ. of Michigan. Since this is a shared resource, our subscribers must first isolate the LLMC-Digital collections  from the many other digital libraries maintained by the UofM. This is quite easy. When you access the stats service, a pull-down menu will be provided. All of the LLMC-Digital collections for which materials are currently available will be found grouped alphabetically between the words “Knight’s Dictionary” and “Library Authentication.” Usage statistics will be provided for each collection separately, but not for all of the collections combined. 
As mentioned in Newsletter # 4, we will be using e-mail and a listserv emanating from LLMC headquarters in Hawaii to notify subscribers if the LLMC-Digital site is down for some reason, and for similar notices. That list serve (dubbed “the coconut wireless”) is now operative. We assembled the e-mail addresses submitted with your institution or firm’s enrollment packet. Should you want other library staff members added to that listserv, you must submit their names and e-mail addresses specifically for this purpose. 
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As important as our ability to notify you as soon as problems occur, is the requirement that we ourselves be notified with similar speed. That didn’t happen on January 30, when something went wrong during a routine system update, causing the UofM-DLPS system for displaying search results to be inoperative for over 20 hours. Most of the down time was at night, but this failure was picked up by at least a few subscribers on the West Coast. We ourselves didn’t hear of the problem until it was already fixed. To preclude that sort of break in communication in the future, we have now been put into the loop for receiving automatic computer notification from UofM-DLPS whenever a malfunction occurs; without the need for human mediation. So, of course, we hope future malfunctions will occur rarely, but we now expect to be on top of things, and to let you know, if they do.Providing Notice of On-Line Content
Several subscribers checked in over the last two months to ask how they can find out which LLMC fiche titles are now on line. Others wanted to know, where the whole title has not yet been digitized, what are the current on-line holdings. We responded that these two classes of information already are available on the site; see below. 
We think having the list-of-titles-available, and current-on-line-holdings provided, where they now are on the site makes sense. This serves the needs of those who want to know only those two items of information. However, as mentioned in past newsletters, some subscribers, particularly their catalogers, have been asking us for a much more compendious list, where a lot of information relative to each on-line title would be aggregated in one place. Specific items of information requested by people to date for inclusion in such an aggregated list are:—list of titles up
We at LLMC have been working with our partners at Michigan and our friends doing the cataloging at St. Louis to aggregate all of this requested data into one list. That work is almost complete and we expect to have the results available on LLMC-Digital by mid-March. Here is how it will work.The new list will be called the LLMC-Digital “Current Status Table.” It will contain all of the items of information listed above, and could be expanded later to include other desirable data. It will not replace the list-of-titles-available and current-on-line-holdings features already on the site (see footnote 4 above, because we feel that those simpler lists serve a different, quick reference, purpose. The Current Status Table will be hosted on LLMC’s web site (www.llmc.com) and will be linked from LLMC-Digital.
LLMC headquarters staff in Kaneohe, assisted with information contributed by the UofM and our cataloging partners at St. Louis University Law Library, will be responsible for updating the Current Status
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Table, on a monthly basis. This regular updating normally will occur within the week following each first-of-the-month loading of new content on LLMC-Digital by UofM-DLPS.
Patrons using LLMC-Digital will be able to access the new Content Status Table directly from the site itself. The link from LLMC-Digital will take them to a special contents page on www.llmc.com. There they will find the familiar list naming those LLMC-Digital collections with current on-line holdings. Each collection name on that list will be linked to the relevant portion of the full Content Status Table. RLIN access
We have had an inquiry from an RLIN library worried about access to the on-line cataloging data being generated by our partners at St. Louis University Law Library. They ask: “We have a contract with RLIN, not OCLC, so we cannot obtain (the OCLC records) for download and copy-cataloging purposes. Does LLMC-Digital offer alternative access to the new records in MARC 21 format?” Our man at St. Louis replied in part as follows (lightly edited):
“Regardless of an institution’s primary source of bibliographic information, it may obtain bibliographic records in WorldCat sets from OCLC.  Many of our RLIN colleagues already have done so, viz. Harvard, Yale, U. Mich., U. Minn., etc.. When an institution orders records, OCLC puts the records in an FTP file which the institution then imports into the local database. The only major restriction that OCLC places on a receiving library is that the records not be transferred to a third party; in other words, they shouldn’t be back loaded to RLIN. Of course, an additional question is, in the III environment, will the existing loader handle these records? Does the loader need to be edited? One suggestion I have would be for you to put a query to the ILUG listserv and find out how these RLIN institutions managed this in the past. I know that Yale and UofM are still III members. Another possibility would be to contact the folks at Yale or Michigan, since they are still III members. Harvard and U. Minn. are now, I believe, using other local systems.”
The Martindale-Hubbell Question
For some reason February brought a flurry of questions regarding Martindale-Hubbell (M-H). Will LLMC be filming beyond its present limit, the year 1999? Will any of the LLMC M-H backfile be digitized and offered on LLMC-Digital?M-H is the only major title for which LLMC does not have full copyright permission for a digital release. In fact our filming agreements (first with M-H itself, and then with Reed-Elsevier which now owns M-H) explicitly excluded digital delivery. We will, of course, digitize the entire backfile up through the year 1923, since those volumes are out of copyright and in the public domain. However, that part alone will not provide libraries with significant space savings. Given the way M-H grew in the last three quarters of the 20th century, fully 86 per cent of the bulk of the set (using the fiche quantities as our measure) falls under copyright.
So we will, once again, have to parlay with our friends at Reed-Elsevier. Unfortunately, few publishers want to engage in talks about waiving copyrights these days. We seem to be living through the afterglow of the “Ted Turner phenomenon.” Readers may recall that Ms. Fonda’s ex made his fortune by
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buying up Hollywood’s mine of old movies and devising ways to extract more gold from spent seams. After that, no publisher wants to be the one who gave away the store. On the other hand, they don’t enjoy looking like dogs in the manger either. So the current practice is to not answer such mail. That way you don’t get in trouble.We are going through that phase with Reed-Elsevier as this is being written. But we’ve been there before. It took us five years of pleading to get action on our request to film the M-H segment 1981–1999. For a long while it was like sending messages out in bottles. But eventually, when the right people had their attention called to the fact that there is probably no money to be made in this, the requisite permissions were rather gracefully forthcoming. We expect that the same thing will happen in this instance. It’s just going to take a while. So, for now, we can’t provide a time frame.
Soliciting New Title Suggestions
During the first half of 2004 we will be working off the remainder of a target list of some 120 U.S. Federal titles selected as the first batch of materials to be digitized and mounted on LLMC-Digital. That list was first announced in Issue No. 1 of the Newsletter, and can be found in the archive of newsletters maintained on www.llmc.com.
Since no more formal apparatus has yet been devised for extracting input from the membership, the LLMC Board of Directors has been serving as the selection committee for site content. In that capacity, at their mid-winter meeting in Atlanta, they decided to add one very large title and one large category of material to the target list. The big title, as mentioned in our last issue is the Congressional Record. The large category of material is the backfile of Canadian titles already filmed under the LLMC Common Law Abroad project.  As we all know, the Congressional Record is very big. For its part, the Canadian backfile currently numbers some 3,763 volumes on 22,580 microfiche, amounting to roughly 2-million page-images. So, between those two, and with what is still in the pipeline, we probably have enough to keep us busy for the rest of this year.
It’s none too soon, however, to start looking toward 2005. By mid-summer we will have to begin coming up with another target list. The LLMC Board expects that the LLMC Advisory Council will take a more formal role in these site-content decisions. They hope that by our mid-summer meeting during the AALL convention in Boston we can have a working committee structure in place. But that committee will have to have something to work with, and not that much time to do their job. It would help if those subscribers who have interests in this area could begin to funnel their input to us in the next few months.
So we’re ripe for suggestions. Please feel free to suggest either general categories or specific titles. Keep in mind that specific-title suggestions would be the most useful and the most likely to get included.  For now LLMC staff (firstname.lastname@example.org) will serve as a repository for receiving and organizing these suggestions until they can be turned over to an Advisory Council committee. In order to help us sort out your e-mail suggestions from the daily spam, we recommend that you use the words “Suggestions for LLMC-Digital Content” in your message subject line.
It bears repeating that a grasp of this concept of “digital collections” is
important for understanding the architecture of the LLMC-Digital site. It
will be essential that reference librarians pass along this information to
prospective users of the service. Due to the immense size to which we are
aspiring with this on-line service (100-million page images in just the first
ten years), the sheer quantity of tiff images will be so great that manipulating
them all at the same time might be impossible on most users’ computers, and
certainly would cause significant degradation in service, particularly in speed.
Therefore, achieving optimal performance requires that the large body of images
be divided up into manageable chunks, termed “digital collections.” This
will be done following roughly the same “form classification” which guided
the bibliographic division of LLMC’s fiche materials into a printed catalog of
15 sections. The main change will be that the titles in the two LLMC
print-catalog sections covering the greatest volume of material (Sections One
& Two, U.S. Federal & U.S. States) will be further subdivided. Thus, on
the site at present there are titles from three separate federal digital
collections: Legislative, Executive, and Judicial. Later, as materials from
Section Two of LLMC’s printed catalog (U.S. States) are digitized and mounted,
these will be organized into 50 digital collections, one per state. Each of the
remaining sections of the print catalog, 3 through 15, contain roughly the right
amount of material to comprise a separate digital collection. Finally, titles
from LLMC’s Common Law Abroad project will be organized into 10 digital
collections, corresponding to the 10 sections into which the Common Law
Abroad bibliography is organized. Eventually this will result in LLMC-Digital
being comprised of at least 76 separate digital collections. Each of these
will be separately searchable, as will any combination thereof. Use statistics
will be provided for each separate collection.
2.) Neat trick department—Users normally access the statistics for only one collection at a time. However, you can select multiple collections using the “control-click” (pc) or “command-click” (mac) options to access the statistics for all of the LLMC collections at once. The stats system won’t add up the results for you, but this maneuver makes it easier to export all the figures at once and manipulate them yourself.
3.) As also mentioned last month, it will help us to sort out your messages on this topic from our daily quota of spam if you could use the key words “coconut wireless” in the subject line of such e-mails. Not losing real messages is becoming a real problem for us. Your help is appreciated.
4.) Once you access the site’s home page you are given the option “Choose.” Clicking on that link brings up the list of the three LLMC collections for which material already has been digitized and mounted. [As to that word “collections.”, if you haven’t already, please do read footnote No. 1, above, which explains our “76 trombones” site architecture.] To find a list of the titles on line: To the left of each of these three collection names you will find an “i”, or “information,” icon. Clicking on that icon will being up a list of the titles currently offered for that collection. For example, try the “i” icon for “Federal Executive.” You will find a whole list of titles laid out in the same “form classification” order LLMC uses in its printed catalog for the U.S. Federal fiche materials. To find a title’s current on-line holdings: Return to the page with the collection listings. Use the Title Volume Page-Search pull-down menu to find your title. Once you have located your title, click on the circle with the legend “view all volumes for this title.” Then click on the “fetch” icon. You will be provided with a full list of all of the volumes for that title which are currently on offer.
5.) From the beginning, we have set up the Content Status Table mirroring the same “76 trombones” scheme utilized for the LLMC-Digital collections. We are doing this because we anticipate that this Table will soon grow very large; eventually into the hundreds of pages. It may even evolve into a replacement for LLMC’s present print catalogs. So, although it may seem a bit like overkill at this stage, it seemed prudent to anticipate eventualities.
6.) See: www.oclc.org/worldcatsets/default.htm
7.) Two relatively smaller problems seem well on the way to resolution. These are the AALS Library Package Plan backfile, and our full reprint, in fiche, of the official documents of the Maritime Law Association of the United States. In both cases the initial filming permission did not include subsequent rights to digital distribution. However, LLMC has approached the two parent organizations and appears to be receiving a sympathetic hearing.
8.) The identity of titles in the Canadian backfile can be ascertained by reference to the Common Law Abroad (CLA) segment of www.llmc.com. Two lists are provided there. The first, which is fixed, lists all CLA titles filmed prior to the publication of the CLA bibliography in Feb., 2001. The second list, which grows steadily, covers all CLA titles filmed since that date. With reference to the Canadian materials, users of the list need to know that Canada was covered on pages 43 to 150 of the printed bibliography. A combined list of the backfile of Canadian titles filmed up through Feb. 2004 is available in print or digital format from LLMC on request.
9.) The only two specific-title suggestions we have received to date are: English Reports-Full Reprint and American Reprint: British Common Law Reports. The importance of the first title is probably obvious. For a description of the latter title and an explanation of why it is important for American law libraries, see the LLMC print catalog, Sect. 11, page 2, line 31