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Changes to accessing Crockford Online

by Michael Ford last modified 15 Apr, 2019 04:23 PM

Crockford Online is changing.

From Tuesday 2 April, all individual accounts on Crockford Online will be subject to new controls to prevent unauthorised sharing of credentials and encourage institutional users to ensure they have a subscription appropriate to their level of use.

Crockfords say the changes reflect the significant changes to how the service has been used in recent years, particularly since the re-launch of the site in 2015.

For the next two months, existing 'NAN user' accounts will continue to function, though they will be subject to the new controls on how many sessions can be open on these accounts which were designed for individuals or their immediate staff only.

On Friday 31 May, all 'NAN user' accounts will be withdrawn, by which point it is envisaged that all previous users will have made arrangements to access Crockford online by one of the new discounted individual or group subscriptions.

Crockford is compiled by Church House Publishing, and the costs associated with compiling the website data (normally updated after each working day) are meant to be funded by income from sales of Crockford publications. Income from print sales has declined by over £100,000 over the last decade. The increase in online subscription income over this period has only replaced around 10% of this amount. This is clearly not sustainable.

While use of the Crockford online service has grown sharply – with both user and session numbers up over a third in the last three years – there has been no corresponding increase in online subscription revenues.

A spokesperson for Crockford said:

"Put simply, around 25% of the institutions and individuals who are using Crockford online are currently not contributing to the costs of running the service – a vastly higher proportion than originally intended or envisaged.

"The new system should ensure that many of these subscribers will in future pay less than they do now for what will be an enhanced service, with Church of England Year Book content now included for no extra cost.

"The old system relied on extensive (and unregulated) sharing of login and password credentials across institutions. The introduction of GDPR has obliged us to review the controls on how data on individuals is accessed, particularly among users who have access to an enhanced level of data (eg full dates of ordination, appointments)."

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