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This document identifies
assumptions fundamental to establishing the feasibility of the Consortium,
and outlines a framework for within which the Founding Members will
define a fully operational organization, that offers works for license
and services to members.
1. Purpose and
- Establish a
framework for projections necessary to assessing the operational
viability of the consortium.
for Development of an Organizational Structure
- Delineate principles
for the development of a full plan consonant with the values
and objectives of members.
- Support the
evolution and growth of the consortium within an environment
of fostering the educational use of digital cultural materials.
2. Shared Assumptions
- A common understanding
of the a shared benefits that derive from collaboration will govern
our activities as a Collective. Among these assumptions are:
of Processing Requests
increased use of museum licensed content for educational purposes
should not impose additional administrative burdens on museums.
Museums incur significant costs in negotiating licenses for
use on a work-by-work or use-by-use basis. If use increases
dramatically, as we hope it will, such requests could become
a considerable burden to museums, eroding whatever income could
be gained from licensing individually. AMICO will offer unlimited
use licenses based on periods of time and numbers of users.
of Monitoring Use
- Museums are
also poorly equipped to monitor uses or pursue violators, and
risk their reputations by doing so too aggressively.
- A Collective
can put in place regular monitoring programs and prosecute violators
independent of its members, and learn about uses to develop
more effective educational products
For Cost Recovery
- Schemes for
calculating and collecting license fees should be designed to
control the level of overhead associated with income collection.
An efficient and cost effective system is a goal.
Make Fees Predictable
- Fixed cost
licenses that encourage use should be offered instead of
Base License Fee on Size of Library
- AMICO licenses
will be priced based on the size of the Library and the
number of users. The per student price will be low enough
to encourage licensing and use.
- AMICO benefits
from having many members and a broadly representative Library.
Museums should be encouraged to contribute to The AMICO Library even if they use other avenues to distribute digital
images and license use.
A Basis for International Reciprocity Agreements
- The most
valuable resource would be one in which North American art
museums, art museums elsewhere in the world, and non-art
museums, contribute to make a library of broad relevance
Build Partnerships with other Collectives
- AMICO should
make efforts from the outset to build partnerships with
similar non-profit consortia of art museums in other countries
and to create reciprocity arrangements of benefit to all.
Reciprocal agreements to administer rights should be sought.
- A complete plan,
based on sound market analysis and concrete corporate financing
opportunities, will be developed by AMICO's Founding Members. The
following is a framework for this plan. It will need to be supported
by detailed market analysis and user needs study.
to other Initiatives
- A variety of
for-profit and not-for-profit entities will compete for this
market. Alternative strategies for providing access to content
are outlined below:
Press is developing the Image Directory, a source for finding
images. It differs from AMICO, because potential users will
need to negotiate with the museums, museums will have to
agree terms and arrange delivery. In addition, this service
only licenses images, without associated documentation.
Rights Resellers and Commercial Relicensors
is acquiring rights to package museum intellectual property
in publications, and may also be assembling a library of
licensable material. Resellers, however, are generally interested
only in the top works and are not willing to carry depth
of documentation. These factors reduce the use of this kind
of resource for university education.
- While companies
such as Picture Network International could broker museum
properties in the same way they now broker intellectual
properties of photographers, these currently have little
relationship with either museums or educational users.
such as the Vid┌omuseum Association in France or the Museum
Licensing Collective and associated marketing and production
companies are interested in licensing and could exchange
libraries. There is potential for AMICO to collaborate internationally,
if it is organized as a not-for-profit, which would enable
it to work with government agencies.
Costs to Members
- Joining AMICO
will involve some costs on the part of its members.
Members Not Primary Source of Income
- The Board
may assess AMICO members fees. However, it is not assumed
that Members will cover the costs of the Consortium alone.
Estimating Members Costs
Members will pay dues, not to cover the administrative
costs of the organization but to ensure that participants
recognize its value.
and travel to enable participation in working groups
on topics such as Standards and Technologies, Products
and Licensing, as well as the time devoted by members
to serving on the board and in other governance roles
should be recognized as member contributions to AMICO.
Preparation Of Contributed Data And Its Upkeep
in preparing and maintaining quality data licensed to
AMICO, including time required for rights clearance,
data preparation, photography and documentation conforming
to AMICO standards, should be recognized as contributions
Start up Costs
- The budget
for the year prior to the first year of licensing should
support all staff required for the collation of the Library
and its marketing; only distribution costs should be excluded.
should reflect the experience of other projects. Operations
costs should not be presumed to grow in proportion to either
membership or subscription base, but distribution costs
should be calculated to rise in proportion to Library size.
Operations costs include:
construction of a joint database
distribution of content to licensees/distributors
creation of the central catalog, including the development
of enhanced indexing tools
the development of new licenses and products
training and support for members
negotiation with rights-holder agencies on behalf of AMICO
Cost Recovery is Goal
- AMICO should
develop a budget that aims for self-sufficiency in a reasonable
Debt repayment and Interest Charges
- AMICO should
seek financing from sources willing to provide no cost loans
(including by assessing its members dues during the early
- The following
criteria should be used to estimate income:
University Licensees and Income
Members will develop a budget and financial projections
for the Consortium. Factors such as the following should
be considered when defining estimates of the income available
Projecting Numbers of Universities
there are 3,500 accredited undergraduate institutions
with 7.5M full time students in the United States alone,
projected numbers of licensees should grow from a small
number to no more than 20% of the eligible institutions
over the first 6 years. The first fully operational
year subscription target should be set at no more than
25 institutions, with subscribers doubling each year.
Projecting Numbers of Students
average size of universities subscribing to the library
should be presumed to decrease over time (since the
larger universities will join first). Enrollment should
be estimated at no more than an average of 15,000 students
in the first year and should decrease by 1,500 per annum
over the first 6 years to an average of 7,500 students
Projecting Income from Licenses
fees should be set on a per student basis. The subscription
fee should grow by increments based on the size of the
Library with a target of $1.00 per student per year
when the size of the library exceeds 250,000 works.
Incentives for Early Subscribers
order to encourage early subscribers, the per student
fee should be frozen at the time of an institution's
subscription, and remain unchanged until the size of
the Library reaches 250,000 works.
Museum Licensees and Income
Members will develop a budget recognizing some income from
museum licenses to non-AMICO participants. The basis for
fees in these licenses and the fee schedule should be set
based on findings of focus groups.
Income from Other Products
- The following
criteria should govern the estimation of income from products
other than The AMICO Library licensed to University and
Price levels should be set in consultation with users,
and be perceived as reasonable.
Income only on Release
from a product should not be presumed in projections
until the product has been commercially released, despite
the fact that some charges may be applied to subscriptions
to products in the testing and development stage (to
test market assumptions about acceptable price levels).
Income from Reciprocity Agreements
exchanges should be presumed to be in balance, rather
than producing income, even though AMICO will be underway
and gathering rights for several years before any other
national/multinational museum rights collective.
- The AMICO board
should allocate income in a reasonable balance towards covering
costs incurred in creating and distributing The AMICO Library,
and towards the provision of Services for the AMICO Members.
Budgets may be in surplus or debit from year to year as long
as the Board is satisfied with projections of ultimate cost
- Founding members
will establish how AMICO will need to grow and be structured
in order to become self-supporting. Founding Members will have
to consider such questions as:
Numbers of Museum Members
- AMICO membership
could expand to the full 160 members of the AAMD, and with
a vote of the members beyond the AAMD. However, annual projections
should be conservative.
Size of Library
criteria will establish required contributions to the Library,
based on levels of membership. These will allow Founding
members to project the growth of the Library.
Incentives for Early or Targeted Contributions
Members will explore mechanisms for rewarding specific types
of contribution to the Library, in terms of quantity, and
in terms of depth of documentation.
& Museum Informatics, the Art Museum Network and the Association of
Art Museum Directors.
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