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Interested in WestlawNext? Doesn't Matter -- You've Got It!

As the rollout of the new and improved Westlaw, WestlawNext, has progressed, we've brought you news from the front lines. Most recently, we gave you some information on pricing policies, including the fact that mucking around in certain databases could run users a cool $3,400 per hour.

This morning, via the Law Librarian Blog, comes the revelation that Thomson Reuters has apparently decided to enable all Westlaw users for WLN without requiring licenses or other agreements. This, of course, doesn't mean granting free access, but rather flashing a bunch of "click here" ads promising that doing so will "[i]mprove your research efficiency by 64%." And then charging you up the Wazoo for that efficiency.

Thomson Reuters is calling this reclassifying WLN usage as "auxiliary." In fairness, the post does indicate that, before a user can start racking up "auxiliary" charges, he or she would have to acknowledge a warning, as is the case with base model Westlaw when you seek to go outside your subscription. That's great, but as the person in control of the purse strings, would you trust attorneys to exercise discretion?

You'll have to, because according to Tamara Acevedo, who initially brought the issue up on a law librarian listserv, Thomson Reuters is also telling subscribers that a blanket disabling of WestlawNext is not technically possible "because the two products link in together."

Posted by Eric Lipman on May 25, 2010 at 10:45 AM | Permalink | Comments (1)


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