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(Note from the Washington State Library:  In order to participate in the Fall 1999 Washington State Databases Trial, each vendor was asked to address questions the Statewide Database Licensing Committee felt were most critical in order for library staff to evaluate products and vendors.  Please contact the vendor's representative, listed below, for additional information on this product.)

1. Describe the database product(s). Include information on subject scope, percentage of full-text, dates of coverage, target audience (including age ranges), and how often the contents are updated. 

For more information - including lists of database sources - see

Ethnic NewsWatch

Ethnic NewsWatch (ENW) is a comprehensive full text database of the newspapers, magazines and journals of the ethnic, minority and native press. Continuously growing since 1991, with archival material back to 1985. Ethnic NewsWatch is now a collection of more than 450,000 full-text articles from over 200 publications. An average of 7,500 new articles is added each month.

Searchable in both English and Spanish, with titles in both languages and more than 100,000 articles in Spanish, ENW provides in-depth coverage of a wide range of current and historical topics easily accessed using free text and fielded searching.

Extensive indexing, including unique fields such as Article Type and Ethnic Group of each publication, enhances the ability to target searches quickly and generate appropriate, exciting and often unexpected results.

The titles in Ethnic NewsWatch represent the diversity of the American population in ways that are not seen in the mainstream media. With an unequaled collection of articles, editorials and reviews from a broad diversity of perspectives, Ethnic NewsWatch is a valuable interdisciplinary resource. Students, teachers, business and government researchers, journalists, politicians, social scientists and anyone else who needs a fuller, more balanced understanding beyond the mainstream can explore issues, perspectives, historical insights, arts and culture in Ethnic NewsWatch. As a general reference collection, Ethnic NewsWatch is a valuable resource for many subject areas ranging from the more focused ethnic area studies to other subject areas - including, the arts, business, education, the environment, history, journalism, political science, and sociology.



GenderWatch is a full text database mainly comprised of periodicals that focus on the impact of gender across a broad spectrum of subject areas. GenderWatch supports programs in business, education, literature and the arts, health sciences, history, political science, public policy, sociology and contemporary culture, gender and women's studies and more. Publications include academic and scholarly journals, magazines, newspapers, newsletters, regional publications, books, booklets and pamphlets, conference proceedings, and government, n-g-o and special reports. GenderWatch contains archival material, in some cases as far back as the 1970's with additional archival material continually added, making this the repository of an important historical perspective on the evolution of the women’s movement and the changes in gender roles and understandings over the last fifteen to twenty years.

GenderWatch covers a wide spectrum of subject areas, topics and issues, including those selected as examples in the broad categories following (which of course fall into more than one area) and many more:


Alt-HealthWatch is a full text and image database of publications focusing on complementary and integrative approaches to healthcare. Alt-HealthWatch represents the perspectives of seven countries and more than 200 therapies and modalities

Alt-HealthWatch is the only full-text and image database focusing on the many perspectives of complementary, holistic and integrated approaches to healthcare and wellness. It offers public, university and medical libraries an immediate resource of nearly 50,000 articles from 170 international peer-reviewed and professional journals, magazines, reports, proceedings, association and consumer newsletters, most from 1990 to the present, plus hundreds of pamphlets, booklets, special reports, original research and book excerpts. In addition to the standard bibliographic citations, it indexes each article by 225 subject categories, 11 article types and 17 publication types.

2. What are the hardware and software requirements for using all the features of the product?

Recommended for Optimal Performance

3. Is remote access included for the subscription price?  If there are additional charges or requirements in order to offer remote access, please describe.   What methods of remote access are supported?

SoftLine Information's web subscriptions provide for remote access by authorized users at no additional charge. Access to the databases is implemented via the institution's IP address range. The library/institution must have a means of verifying authorized users (student ID, library card # etc.) when patrons access the Softline information databases at the library/institution server.

4. Please discuss any methods or assistance you offer regarding remote access patron verification and authentication.

If IP authentication is not possible, SoftLine Information will work with the library to establish a means of access using passwords, or combination of IP and password.

5. What end user delivery options, such as printing, emailing or faxing results, are available beyond just viewing results on the computer monitor?

The search interface allows several options for downloading and printing: article only, article with citation, range of articles etc.

E-mail and fax capability is not provided as a function of the program but may be implemented as part of the standard browser or software programs installed

6. What customer training is provided, and at what cost?

The search interface and design of SoftLine Information's databases are intuitive and do not usually require staff or patron training. However, for those libraries that request it, Arta Zygielbaum, the Regional Sales Manager, will whenever possible, come in to the library and train staff. There is no charge to the library for training.

Libraries will be provided with introductory information packets as well as printed User Guides.  Printed copies of the Ethnic NewsWatch and GenderWatch Publisher Directries are also provided.  All these materials are free of charge.

7. What customer and technical support is provided, including hours of operation.

Customer support is available Monday - Friday 8.30 a.m. to 6.30 p.m. EST. at 800/524-7922 or [email protected].

The server hosting the SoftLine databases operates 24 x 7. Occasionally the server is brought down for maintenance and upgrades. This is usually done on a weekend night at a time when usage has been shown to be at zero.

8. Describe the statistics you provide, and discuss whether your statistical reporting complies with guidelines developed by the International Coalition of Library Consortia which may be found at .

SLI's provision of usage statistics to subscribing libraries complies where appropriate with the ICOLC guidelines.

SLI will provide libraries with usage statistics which include the following information :

Statistics will be distributed by e-mail to an address designated by the library, on a monthly or quarterly basis, as requested. SLI is also planning development of access to usage statistics via a website.

9. Describe your pricing structure or formula for the product. If there are additional costs for retrieving full text, describe the pricing for this service. 

SoftLine information already has a pricing structure in place that includes lower prices for community colleges, academic institutions with enrollment under 1,000, and public libraries serving populations under 75,000.

In addition, for buying groups such as the Washington State Library, the company has structured a pricing model based on FTE's for academic libraries, and population for public libraries.

School libraries (K - 12) will be priced at one low rate, as will the hospital libraries.

The base price for the Web subscriptions includes 2 simultaneous users, with a small incremental charge ($150 or $250) for each additional user. The price for K-12 libraries will include 5 simultaneous users (within a single building).

Remote access is included in the subscription price for authorized users - the library must have an authentication mechanism in place.

SoftLine Information's databases are all full-text - subscription rates include retrieval of the full text.


The following are the standard list prices for the 3 SoftLine Information databases, categorized by library type. These may be compared with the Washington State group price ranges to get an indication of the discounts. All prices are for the basic 2-user level.


A. Softline Information Standard Prices

  Ethnic NewsWatch Alt-HealthWatch GenderWatch
Pub. Libraries (1 location)

Colleges/Univ. (1 location)

$4895 $1795 $1395
Community Coll.

Coll/Univ <1000 enrollment

$3295 $1195 $918
Public Lib <75,000 pop. $1095 $1195 $918
K-12 Schools $1095 $750 $500


B. Discounted Prices for Washington State Libraries

4-Year Colleges

FTE Range <2000 ……………………>20,000

Ethnic NewsWatch $2279 … … … $4365
Alt-HealthWatch $822 … … … $1575
GenderWatch $634 … … … $1215

  Community Colleges

FTE Range <1000 ……………………..>10,000

Ethnic NewsWatch $1947 … … … $2988
At-HealthWatch $703 … … … $1071
GenderWatch $542 … … … $826

Public Libraries (some examples)

Population range <75,000 … 100,000 …..300,000 …….500,000 …..1,000,000

Ethnic NewsWatch $1095     $4365       $5740     $10,400      $23,400
Alt-HealthWatch     $1190     $1575       $1900       $3000         $8000
GenderWatch          $918      $1215      $1500         $1700       $4000

Hospitals/Medical Libraries

Alt-HealthWatch $1195

K - 12 Schools and Tribal Libraries

Ethnic NewsWatch (1995 - ) $595 (for schools: incl. 5 simultaneous users in a single building)


10. What is the minimum participation level (however you care to define it) that would be needed to allow participating libraries to receive a discount? What is the minimum discount for a group buy? Please clarify how you would treat existing library customers with regard to a group buy.

Minimum Requirements:

To protect SoftLine Information's existing revenue in the State of Washington, a base minimum of $12,000 in new orders and web upgrades must be committed to before the above group discounts take effect. This can include orders from Alaska, Idaho and Montana. A separate minimum requirement will be established for Oregon libraries.

Libraries must order by December 20, 1999 to take advantage of these prices.

Existing subscribers:

1. Current subscribers to the CD-ROM version of the databases who upgrade to the Web under this agreement will be credited with the unused portion of their CD-ROM subscription.

2. Current subscribers to the web version will be charged the reduced group rate on their 2000 renewal.

11.  Please provide name and contact information (toll-free telephone number, e-mail address, hours, etc.) should libraries wish to make further inquires.

Individual libraries may contact the SoftLine Information Regional Manager for specific pricing information: Arta Zygielbaum, 800/833-8025, [email protected]

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