Can I accept a donated medical journal from a staff member?

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  • Hello --
    I will be cancelling quite a few subscriptions for 2005 due to budget constraints.
    One of the staff members at my facility offered to donate her issues of a journal after she reads them. We have from 1985 to the current year in our collection.
    I am not sure that I can accept her issues because I am cancelling an institutional subscription and I am sure she probably has an individual subscription.
    Can anyone tell me if I can accept her issues and put them into the collection?
    Thanks in advance for any help with this.

    Kathy Kessel
  • Kathy,

    I believe it is accepted library practice NOT to do this although there isn't really a reason in copyright law that would prohibit it. I suspect it has more to do with the terms and conditions imposed on the individual subscriber that would prevent giving it to a library.

  • My understanding is that the owner of the subscription can donate it to the library - he/she owns it and can do whatever he/she wants .. however, the library can only accept it if it is NOT in lieu to paying for a subsciption.

    So canceling subscriptions and accepting donations instead is a no no.
  • Peggy is right. Sec. 109 gives the owner the right to dispose of his/her copy as s/he sees fit, including donating it to a library. However, publishers often restrict this option in the subscription "contract." So your staff member should look there to see if there are any such restrictions.

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