Dear EBSCO Customer,
As you probably know, EBSCO has done a lot more than any other aggregator to preserve the stability of our full-text databases on behalf of our customers. We have gone to great lengths to ensure that our customers have avoided losing access to any important magazines or journals, particularly when there is no other way to gain reasonable access to the publications. EBSCO has done so at great expense, but without passing on those dramatic cost increases to our customers.
In the case of The Economist, there was recently a bid by the publisher for a semi-exclusive contract. EBSCO did not think the required investment was justifiable, given that the cost would need to be passed on to our customers, so as of June 30, 2012, our coverage will become A&I-only (abstracting & indexing) for this magazine. We wanted to give you a full year's notice. In the end, our understanding is that two vendors (Gale and ProQuest) will continue to provide limited access (to a text-only version of the publication with no images), and the publisher (via EIU) will continue to offer direct, full access (including images).
As mentioned, EBSCO will continue to index and abstract The Economist, so if your library has a link resolver, users will still be able to get to the limited full text (without images) via Gale or ProQuest (with a subscription) or the complete full text with images via EIU (with a subscription). If your library does not have a link resolver, EBSCOhost offers a free CustomLink feature, which can also be used to provide links for this publication.
It is worth noting that this rare occurrence does not signify some sort of new trend; it is instead an anomaly and a conscious choice by EBSCO to keep costs manageable by not overpaying for a publication that is somewhat easily accessible via other means.