Thursday, December 14, 2006

Loving LexisNexis?

In renewing my AvantGuild membership today, I discovered one of the benefits was a significant discount to access LexisNexis. It's still not inexpensive, but I've heard such great things about this search engine to be tempted. Do you or have you ever used it? Is it worth even the discounted price?

I don't use LN, not because it's not a wondertool - it is- but because, as you mentioned, it's incredibly pricey and given the cost, it simply doesn't seem worth it. That said, I just checked out the AvantGuild discount, and you can now gain access to Nexis for $59 a month. Which wouldn't break the budget, but, I'll argue, still probably isn't worth it. But I'm posting this question because I'm open to being swayed, and I'd love to hear from you guys whether or not you use LN and if so, why you pay for it.

Here's why I still won't be forking over my $$: LN is definitely an incredible search tool. No doubt about it. BUT, given how exhaustive the free online search engines are, I've really never found a need for it. Between google, Yahoo, pubmed, etc, you can truly track down just about anything you're looking for. I dunno - maybe LN makes it quicker (I really don't know), so if time is really money for you, then LN might be a worthwhile investment. But unless you're doing painstaking research and doing a lot of it at that, I can't imagine why you'd need it. I report on dozens of studies and track down dozens more experts and authors each month, and google, etc, have never failed me. So why shell out $708 dollars a year (granted, they're deductible) when my system is working perfectly well?

So those are my thoughts on it. But again, since I'm not a LN user, I'd definitely love to hear from others. I really could be wrong on this...maybe LN is the tool I didn't know I'd been missing all of my life!


Anonymous said...

LEXIS/NEXIS can be a wonderful resource, but it's not worth spending $708 a year to subscribe to this service when there are lots of other options available.

Many public libraries offer free access to ProQuest if you have a library card. I can even access ProQuest from home through my library's web site.

If you belong to a university alumni association, check to see if they offer free or low-cost access to data bases.

If I'm willing to get out of my jammies, I can go to a local university library where, for $30 a year, I have access to all sorts of data bases -- even a somewhat restricted version of LEXIS/NEXIS.

At one time I had unlimited access to LEXIS/NEXIS and I found it (1) difficult to limit my search because there were so many sources of information available, and (2) amazingly seductive in terms of wasting time looking for all sorts of information I really didn't need.

And now, before I sign off, let me just say: "Keep up the good work, Allison!" I love your blog and appreciate your honesty and your willingness to share information and experience.

Allison Winn Scotch said...

What great info. Thanks so much for sharing your insights. I agree about time-wasting! My husband has access to it via work, which he can get at home, and I'm so tempted to LN every single person I've ever met in my life!