Based on a paper presented at the UKSG seminar ‘E-book: the new serial?’, The British Library Conference Centre, London,Wednesday 9 November 2005
The draft of the new COUNTER Code of Practice for online books and reference works was published in January 2005. Its overall format and structure are consistent with the existing COUNTER Code of Practice for journals and databases. Only the content of the usage reports has been changed and the set of definitions of terms expanded. One of the main challenges we faced in developing the new Code of Practice was the lack of consistency among publishers in the ways in which they define, structure and distribute online books. Some publishers make online books available only as a single file that can be downloaded in its entirety. Other publishers allow the downloading of individual chapters or entries, such as dictionary definitions.The COUNTER Code of Practice has to cover these and other scenarios.