The fee policy, charging practices and problems of database searching in Finland are reviewed. The article is based on 24 interviews with experienced searchers in Spring 1991; one third working in public libraries, one third in academic libraries and one third in special libraries or information bureaux in the area of social sciences. No two interviewees were from the someplace of work. Each library sector follows different charging practices. At present, public library database searches are free of charge. In academic libraries fee policy and charging practices vary considerably from one library to another. In special libraries or information bureaux, current fee policy seems to be quite clear; database searches are carried out mainly for the members of parent organisations but external use is restricted. Problems connected with charging vary accordingly. In public libraries non‐charging policy has caused an accumulation of searches and resources for them are insufficient. In academic libraries the foremost fee problems relate to the heterogeneous and ambiguous nature of charging practice. In special libraries or information bureaux the situation is not so problematic. The fee policy, charging practice and problems faced differ between various organisations and so do the challenges that libraries will face in the near future as regards fees for database searches.
Iivonen, M. and Savolainen, R. (1993), "TIME TO PAY? THE PRACTICES AND CHALLENGES OF CHARGING FOR DATABASE SEARCHES IN FINLAND", Online and CD-Rom Review, Vol. 17 No. 3, pp. 149-155. https://doi.org/10.1108/eb024438
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