Special Access Instructions (e.g. Newspapers, Popular Websites, etc.)

Posted 4 months ago by Maria Ziemer

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Maria Ziemer Admin

Far and away one of the most common rules we help libraries configure are special instructions for users providing guidance on how to access resources like the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Economist, Harvard Business Review, and countless others. Many libraries provide access to these resources through special licensing arrangements or databases, but users who navigate directly to the public website may not realize they have access through the library. Use LibKey Nomad++ to add special instructions and a custom link, directing users to the library's access for those resources.

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Lacey.mamak posted about 2 months ago

One thing to note is that the change from Login to Account isn't enough to tell if someone has an active subscription since you can login to your account after your subscription has expired. This happens for our faculty  who are wondering why, if they are logged in to their NYT account, they are still hitting a paywall. But the Group Pass must be renewed every few years, so even if they are logged in if their group pass is expired then they will still hit a paywall. The process of renewing the pass happens at https://ezmyaccount.nytimes.com/group-pass which we proxy. It's the proxy authentication/ IP address that gives our users the right to set up an account. Nancy, FWIW, in my experience, a long as you went through proxy authentication to get to the group pass website, or reached the website from within the campus IP range, you can use any email address to claim a group pass.

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John Seguin posted about 2 months ago Admin

Thanks for both replies!  The change that Nancy is highlighting (from Login In to Account) may be significant.  Thanks to both for explaining the "group access" concept.  I have a personal NYT account and it seems to do the same thing (change from Login to Account) but then of course when I login it shows my sub type rather than the "group access".  I think this may still be enough to research to see if this concept I'm envisioning would work here as well but I have other databases in mind as well (some libraries only have u/p access to JSTOR for example).  Thanks again for the feedback and examples both!

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Lacey.mamak posted about 2 months ago

John, 

Unfortunately, there isn't any difference between a page shown to an Academic Pass holder and to any other subscriber. There's nothing on the page itself that is different, and the only difference I can find is if you open the Account menu. When you open the account menu, you see a little gray pill that says "Group access." But that is only displayed when you open the Account menu. It doesn't appear to be in the source code of the page when the menu isn't open.

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Nancy Babb posted about 2 months ago

Thanks so much, John. The users have to register for an individual account via Academic Pass, which then acts substantially (or perhaps even entirely?) like any other individual account. The primary stipulation for the user is that they must use their institutional email; but they set their own unique password.  Once they are logged in, the "Log in" button at nytimes.com pages changes to display "Account" with a dropdown menu of account info and options.

becomes

The "Account" dropdown displays user email, subscriptions, settings, help, & log out option.

I'd be happy to demo my account and how everything displays, if that would be helpful.

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John Seguin posted about 2 months ago Admin

Lacey/Nancy - when users are authenticated via Academic Pass does it indicate "somehow" on that screen ("welcome Academic Pass user at SUNY Buffalo!" or similar?).  Working on a feature idea to perhaps help with this.... :)  Thanks!

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Nancy Babb posted about 2 months ago

We went live with Nomad++ in January and the first custom message we made was for New York Times Academic Pass. It's true that we can't prevent the message from displaying for authenticated Academic Pass users, but I think that the benefits of highlighting access far outweigh the disadvantages. We haven't had any complaints from users about the banner -- although I'll admit I find it a bit annoying myself! Our message doesn't prompt for login but simply notes the availability ("Authorized UB Users have access to NYTimes.com. Academic Pass account setup and activation required." with a link to "More info."  So our users may view it as a simple branding ad? Having said all that -- I would love it if the user could be allowed to whitelist sites themselves, and permanently (or at least for longer than a day) prevent the banner display.

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Maria Ziemer posted 2 months ago Admin

Lacey, this is a good question, and while I can't speak to the user feedback on whether or not it is confusing for the message to appear even when they are signed in to Academic Pass, it is possible for users to close/dismiss the message. We've also just released an update that makes it possible to restrict messages to URLs (as opposed to entire domains) and supports exact matching. For example, you could restrict the messaging to the NYTimes homepage but not have it display on subpages. I would be interested to hear others' feedback on this, as well.

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Lacey.mamak posted 2 months ago

I agree this is a great use case, and I've implemented on WashingtonPost.com, since we only have access to that content in the ProQuest database. I used a link button to direct to the Washington Post page in ProQuest (see screenshot). 


I have a question for Nancy or others -- how do you handle the places like NYTimes.com, where you have an Academic Pass subscription to the website and users need to register for individual accounts?  There's no way to only show a custom message to unauthenticated folks. Even folks who have an active pass and are signed in to NYTimes.com will still be shown the custom message urging them to sign up for a pass. Has this been confusing/annoying for your users who already have these accounts?

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Nancy Babb posted 4 months ago

We are using Nomad++ custom messages to alert users to our Academic Pass subscriptions to newspapers like NYT and WSJ. Since these resources require users to register for individual accounts, the normal access routes aren't applicable (IP, Proxy, institutional login).

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