fees for data

Daniel Janzen djanzen at SAS.UPENN.EDU
Mon Jan 30 13:38:13 CST 1995

29 January 1995
Costa Rica

Dear Julian:

   I enjoyed your snippy reply and would like to see the bulk of the ATBI
stuff to fully "free".

   However, I would encourage you to figure out a way to include in future
replies that of course the information is not free (nor is it zero cost as
your table implies and states).  The fee was levied and has already been
paid (and will continue to be paid) through tax-payer's dollars in the form
of your salary, your donated time, NSF grants, NSF support of Internet,
etc.  It is just that someone else (plural) besides the immediate user paid
most of the bill.  Strictly speaking, there should have been some number of
pennies listed after each of your items, with a note "bill sent to US
taxpayer and State taxpayer".

   This is not, incidentally, a mere academic wiggle.  The academic
community has grown into a disfunctional habit of thinking that their
services are "free" to the scientific community (and public) and that they
are not paid for their products - that they pursue truth, not salary,
commissions, fees, etc.  This is just a way of saying that they are paid
indirectly (and the user charged indirectly) rather than directly.  In my
efforts to get more funds flowing into the taxasphere, I am finding that
one of the major roadblocks is the long-established traditional smoke and
mirrors that academics (and museum members at the Ph.D. level) are somehow
not part of the normal economic web of society.  They are, but for a very
long time their compensation has come in a variety of different currencies
- barter if you will - which makes it extraordinarily hard to budget and
build into global development.  How do you sell ego and love for creepy
crawlies on the future's market?

    Anyway, just a thought in response to yours.

Dan Janzen

>"Paisley S. Cato" <pcato at LEO.VSLA.EDU> asked:
>>        $90/hour for 24 hr service
>>        $10,000 for annual subscription with $1,000 set up fee
>>A California museum herp division based its recovery fees on
>>the number of records -- primarily to recover the cost of
>>providing the data.
>>Can anyone else provide actual fees requested by museums or
>>other agencies?  Thanks.
>Yes, here are the fees for connecting (via Internet) to the Fish
>Collection database at Cornell (complete access to entire database
>with searches by keyword and by QBE)
>Per 24 hour period:  $0.00
>Per annum:           $0.00 plus $0.00 setup fee
>Per record charge:   $0.00
>Map plotting charge: $0.00
>Standard requests average 32 seconds. (well, close anyhow, a search
>of all records of Kentucky fishes from the FishGopher participants
>took 21 seconds and returned 4446 records)
>Similar fees apply to the fish collection data from all FishGopher
>participants (MCZ, UMMZ, FMNH, ANSP, UAIC and CU), representing
>over 600,000 EO records (available at <gopher://muse.bio.cornell.edu/>).
>Note: copyright restrictions apply, map plotting available only for MCZ,
>Julian Humphries                          Email: jmh3 at cornell.edu
>The MUSE Project, Cornell University
>83 Brown Road, Building 3
>Ithaca, NY  14850  USA
>Voice: 607-257-8143                       Fax:   607-257-8109
>It is impossible to make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenius.
>     Edsel Murphy

IN COSTA RICA (3 Jan- 31 Aug 1995):
c/o Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio)  FAX 506-236-2816
Apdo. 22-3100 Santo Domingo de Heredia           tel 506-236-7690
Heredia, Costa Rica                              djanzen at sas.upenn.edu

IN PHILADELPHIA (Sept-Dec 1995):
Department of Biology                           FAX 215-898-8780
University of Pennsylvania                      tel 215-898-5636
Philadelphia, PA 19104                          djanzen at sas.upenn.edu

We can be also reached at the Guanacaste Conservation Area, where we live
in northwestern Costa Rica - tel and FAX 506-695-5598.  However, many
people use that phone and it is best to call at night or on weekends.

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