February 8, 2012
Thomson Reuters' OnePass-YourAss Scheme, Part Two: "There are times when verbal ingenuity is not enough."
Just because some OnePass account holder gets a pop up in WestMart's eCommerce online purchasing system which says in effect "I am authorized to make this purchase" doesn't cut it when Thomson Reuters has made absolutely no attempt to verify that statement. That OnePass account holder may think he or she is authorized to buy because he or she has this nifty OnePass user account but will learn that is not the case after racking up an institutional charge that results in an in-house "Banzai" meeting with this buckaroo.
"Hey, hey, hey — don't be mean. We don't have to be mean. 'Cause, remember: no matter where you go... there you are." Hell, even Amazon has a better system. I can buy something on Amazon, charge it to my personal credit card or established institutional line-of-credit account depending on well, you know, I am buying something for me or my library. I can also instruct Amazon where I want the stuff shipped as in to home or office and that ship-to is not tied to my billing selection. Of course, there is another solution. It is a bit extreme but in this Shed West Era of print cancellations and there being no sacred cows requiring both WEXIS search services, just kill off TR Legal search but remember you will also have to kill off all OnePass-ed "solutions" services, too.
So here we are. Once upon a time, West reps were selling CDs to individual attorneys that showed up on their institution's billing account without prior approval from whomever actually had the authority to spend the institution's $$. Then billing to West institutional accounts was restricted. Now TR Legal is stealing a sales tactic from the bad old days and applying it again.
"Treat us good, we'll treat you better. Treat us bad, we’ll treat you worse." I'm thinking TR Legal believes most institutional buyers just won't be won't be paying much attention to their OnePass-YourAss system. Bull. In these times of close monitoring of spending, even a $12 charge to a library account gets spotted. Of course, not all institutional buyers pay that much attention or are as knowledgeable in how Thomson Reuters tries to conduct business until the Company gets caught.
Today's TR ProView eBooks will end up being just like yesterday's CD-ROMs. When we invoice-playing institutional buyers see statements that include the $$$ charges for unauthorized purchases (plus their multi-years commitments to and good 'til cancelled licensing terms) by way of OnePass-YourAss all hell will break out again.
"In my experience, nothing is ever what it seems to be, but everything is exactly what it is." Hello TR Legal, we know you really meant it when you told lawyers in a nutshell that they needed their heads examined if they know their law librarian's name a couple of years ago. We know the marketing objective to increase sales is to sell directly to the attorney (pBooks, eBooks, even, god hell us, perhaps someday personalized WLN plans in institutional settings) by way of WestMart. Hell, I've got no problem if any attorney foolishly wants to spend his or her money to buy one of your products or services but I seriously doubt any institutional buyer wants that personal purchase to become an institutionalized expense.
I offer three off-the-top of this aging and decrepit Boomer-Gen law library director reasons:
- There is no verification mechanism in place;
- Institutional buyers just might want to make volume purchases at a discounted price; and
- You know damn well, no institutional buyer representative wants to start his or her week off with the following to-do list.
OnePass Account Holder Jim Smith's license for X is set to expire. Does he want to keep it? What is the price inflation rate?
OnePass Account Holder Bob Daleo's licenses for X and Y are set to expire. Does he want to cancel one or both of them? If not, what is the price inflation rate?
One Pass Account Holder Mike Suchsland's license for A is set to expire. Does he want to keep it? What is the price inflation rate?
Remember to check with OnePass Account Holder Peter Warwick to see if he still wants us to shell out for SuperLawyer or has simply forgotten about that.
Check to confirm that Friday's request that former OnePass Account Holder Tom Glocer's account and all things tied to his account has been vaporized.
One Pass Account Holder Mike Suchsland's license for B and Z is set to expire. Does he want to cancel one or both of them? If not, what is the price inflation rate?
One Pass Account Holder Deirdre Stanley's licenses for C, D, X, Y are set to expire. Before checking with her, log into her account to see if her license for A was vaporized because Jim Smith thinks it is too expense although Mike Suchsland "loves" it. (Note to self: did we get a credit?)
OnePass Account Holder Jim Smith's license for C and E are set to expire. Does he want to keep them? What is the price inflation rate?
Check (again) to see if the glitch to Jim Powell's OnePass account has been fixed yet.
"A battle won is a battle which [Thomson Reuters] will not acknowledge being lost." TRI's year-end financial report and webcast about that starts at 8:30 AM (Eastern) tomorrow. I doubt any of the execs will be highlighting this OnePass-YourAss scheme to guarantee a revenue stream for its cash cow, TR Legal.
Of course, I could be wrong. They just might be that arrogant to still think TR Legal's US legal customer base really, really needs what TR sells so their customer base will swallow OnePass-YourAss. Hell, someone may even follow the well-scripted response that "we've surveyed our customers and they think this is great!"
"Know that, as in life, there is much that many have looked upon but few have seen because, as my father told me and his father told him, you will come to learn a great deal if you study the insignificant in depth." The investment community knows that. Remember folks, what really matters to the investment community isn't one-off revenue. It's all about organic growth of recurring revenues (read subscriptions and licenses). TR Legal paid the price for maintaining its historical rate of print supplement price inflation during what is known as the work-in-progress Shed West Era.
TRI's OnePass-YourAss scheme with its tie-up to institutional accounts, its multi-year commitments to its coming line of ProView eBooks designed to be sold to individual attorneys with that later-on standing order component and the automatic eBook price inflation rates we will see in a couple of years, is designed for one and only one reason. That reason is not "consumer surplus," an economic term of art for consumers happy to get more than what they expected. Nope, the strategic objective here is increasing its lost revenue stream for recurring revenues. However...
"Those in a hurry show only that the thing they are about is too big for them."
Treat us good, we'll treat you better. Treat us bad, we’ll treat you worse. Hehe this is nice slogan.
Posted by: Dave Stevenoss | Feb 9, 2012 1:37:45 PM