Derk Haank interview, translated into English

Jan 17 2011 Published by under Open Access

"The Big Deal, a problem? C'maaaaaaaan! There's no problem! I'm getting big fat checks; where's the problem?"

Interview here, if you'd like to check my interpretation.

I can't even manage to get angry at this. Events will overtake it. I stand pat on my current set of predictions: in 2011–2013, even the few remaining wealthy libraries will go over the cliff. (Why will it take three years? Because most Big Deal contracts are multi-year. It's hard to know when precisely the renewal demand will come in that shatters the camel's back.)

Haank is even right about one thing: if libraries could just kick the Big Deal can down the road a little further, they would. It's an utterly dysfunctional short-termist way to behave, but it's worked this far.

Think of Haank as a realtor in 2005. Real-estate market looked great from a realtor's perspective! That it was structurally unsound, and the cracks couldn't be spackled over any more, wasn't something he was prepared to admit, or even acknowledge.

I could be wrong. I don't think I am, though. Then again, neither does he.

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