Publishers Face Pressure From Libraries to Freeze Prices and Cut Deals

LET'S MAKE A DEAL (MAYBE): The publishers' hall at the recent Association of College and Research Libraries conference, held in Seattle in mid-March, was a study in give-and-take: how much publishers such as Elsevier and Oxford University Press will give in this lousy economy, and how much budget-strapped librarians can take.

Libraries are some of the biggest customers for academic and commercial publishers. Salespeople from some bigger vendors — in the supersize category of