Cary Alderson, heading of licensing at Jisc collections, has published an article on Research Information discussing the potential benefits of evidence based acquistion (EBA). EBA involves libraries paying an up front fee for a selected collection. Content is made available to users and usage is recorded via COUNTER statistics. After six months or a year the consortium then buys books, based on use, up to the value of the up-front fee.
Catching up with the twitter search on #ebooks and #libraries today finds ebooks and libraries very much in the spotlight outside the library world with these stories from commercial news pages:
- BBC Business News broad ranging story Paperless public libraries switch to digital starts with a report on Bexar County (Texas) Library’s bookless Bibliotech and follows it up with a discussion of the move to ebooks in libraries, the issues libraries face with publishers, and finally a discussion of library closures in the UK. The Bibliotech contines to attract attention with a story in the LA Times Paperless Public Library to Open in Texas
- USA Today showcases the pros and cons of ereaders in a brief piece entitled The divide between two book ends: Print, digital (and ABC News (Australia) also has a piece on the development of ebooks – Australian publishers say the book is not dead, it is being redefined by new technology)
- The Tennessean features an opinion piece from Tre Hargett, Tennessee’s secretary of state E-books present new chapter for libraries, publishers to solve in which he reiterates the value of libraries:
Libraries are places that cultivate a love of reading. The people who borrow books from libraries are more likely to later buy books on their own. The same principle should apply to e-books, particularly if people borrow e-books from libraries to become more comfortable with the new format before making purchasing decisions
and calls for libraries and publishers to work together :
I am optimistic publishers and libraries will be able to make the necessary adjustments, just as they have in response to other challenges they have faced together through the years. However, to make the transition as smooth as possible, the time to start planning for those adjustments is now.
- The New York Daily News Books Blog “Page Views” article The move from paper to digital outlined in ‘Out of Print’ documentary reviews the 55 minute film Out of print from one-time librarian and director Vivienne Roumani which has been shown at the Tribeca Film Festival and Seattle International Film Festival. The film –
draws us into the topsy-turvy world of the written word, illuminating the turbulent, exciting journey from the book through the digital revolution. Writers, publishers, readers all in flux. Booksellers closing shop. Librarians and teachers seeking new roles. (IMDB summary)
Pointing a finger at the parents and teachers who have the power to affect the habits of the next generation, Roumani warns not of a dystopian future without books, but of one without readers. And although it’s never dwelled upon for more than a few moments, it is “Out of Print’s” most profound proclamation. (Jeva Lange, NY Daily News Books Blog “Page Views”)
Finally a couple of short posts from the Library blogsphere:
- Library blogger David Lee King provides a succinct roundup of the current situation with major ebook vendors in The big six – where we stand at the moment
- while Pegasus Librarian gives an example of the difficulty that current e-book licencing can create for scholars wishing to access obscure sources in Well THAT’S Inconvenient: Academic Ebooks Strike Again.
As is often the case, it’s worth taking a look at the comments section following many of these articles and posts…
Today’s twitter search on #ebooks and #libraries brings us the following:
- E-Books in European public libraries : lending rights and business models – a blog post from Frank Huysmans (Professor of Library Science at the University of Amsterdam) discussing the challenges and issues facing libraries and government policy makers in Europe as they grapple with ebooks and elending. Includes a handy list of links to position papers and policy documents. Particularly useful is:
Dimensions in business models for public library e-lending which summarizes in tabular form the the variety of issues and options that libraries and library policy makers need to take into account when negotiating for ebooks and/or developing policies.
- The June 2013 issue of American Libraries features an e-content supplement Digital content : what’s next with feature articles on
You can read a summary of the themes of this supplement in Jazzy Wright’s District Dispatch blog post How libraries are evolving in the new digital realm.
From the latest twitter search on #ebooks and #libraries –
So, dear reader, if your library doesn’t have the e-book you’d like to read, please don’t complain to your librarian. Complain to your publisher. Tell him to wake up and get real.
Meanwhile at the academic end of the spectrum InfoDocket has led us to this paper:
from the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) (IN Research Library Issues, no. 280 (September 2012)). The article explains how they developed principles for ebook licencing and includes a Research Library Statement on Ebooks
The Califa Library Group and Contra Costa County Library (CCCL) today officially announced the beta launch of Enki Library, a new ebook platform designed to host and lend library-managed ebooks using the Douglas County model. Named after the Sumerian god of mischief, creativity, and intelligence, Enki went live at CCCL and the San Francisco Public Library (SFPL) on May 6, and will soon serve multiple libraries in California, beginning with members of the Bay Area Library and Information System (BALIS) consortium.
As well as being
Named after the Sumerian god of mischief, creativity, and intelligence
Enki is also a rather nice anagram of e ink.
The latest news, courtesy of twitter (#ebooks and #libraries) and and other sources…
- Connecticut House of Representatives Unanimously Passes Bill to Study Library Access to Ebooks, Legislation Now Moves to State Senate (thanks to InfoDOCKET for picking up this story) – the legislation has been modified from the original proposal that “the general statutes be amended to require publishers of electronic books to offer such books for sale to public and academic libraries at the same rates as offered to the general public”, instead “requiring the commissioner of consumer protection to report to the General Assembly on the issue by Feb 1”.
- Video Presentation by Two Public Library Leaders: “Ebooks: The Content Divide” (again, thanks to InfoDOCKET for picking up this story) – the video also includes details of a briefing of politicians and a call to united action on the part of libraries.
“Patrick Losinski, CEO of the Columbus Metropolitan Library and Kim Fender, Director of the Cincinnati and Hamilton County Public Library, recently briefed members of the Ohio Library Council with an overview of the current ebooks in libraries situation focusing on consumer access to titles.”
- Apple was “ringmaster” in conspiracy to fix e-book prices, US says – latest news from ArsTechnica on the following lawsuit:
The Department of Justice (DOJ) filed suit last year against Apple and six e-book publishers: Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Penguin, Pearson, and Simon & Schuster. The trial is scheduled to begin June 3 in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York. Apple has denied being part of any conspiracy,…
- E-books now make up 1/5 of U.S. Book Sales – as reported in Mashable, statistics from the Association of American Publishers (AAP) and the Book Industry Study Group (BISG), for 2012 report that:
Approximately one in five books sold were e-books, which collectively accounted for $3 billion, or also about a fifth, of all trade publishing revenue, up 44.2% from 2011
A twitter search on #ebooks and #libraries has brought up a number of new and interesting posts relating to ebook advocacy:
- Presentations from the IFLA MLAS (Management of Library Associations Committee) and CILIP (Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals) Seminar E-books in libraries: A global question of survival? are now available online. Thanks to infoDOCKET for the heads up.
- A report from the Library Journal OverDrive and Sourcebooks to Launch Ambitious Ebook Data Experiment
OverDrive and Sourcebooks are preparing to launch an innovative and ambitious pilot program whose goal is to clearly demonstrate the impact library ebook lending has on book sales and author recognition.
- A paper by two academic librarians Navigating the e-book maze, which “addresses some of the challenges of library e-book lending and compares major vendor options” has been published in The Charleston Advisor. Thanks again to infoDOCKET for the heads up.
- An article from Minuteman News Center Libraries, publishers at odds over e-books which as well as an overview of the issues libraries face with ebooks, includes discussion of the proposed Connecticut Bill HB 5164 An Act Concerning “E-Books” And Libraries that we featured in our earlier post An Act [bill] concerning “e-books” and libraries
On the third of May (2013) North American library advocacy group the Urban Libraries Council held a 30 minute ebooks issues briefing webinar.
The podcast of the webinar, the full Briefing Paper – Libraries, Publishers and Public Access to E-Books and the two page summary Libraries, Publishers and Public Access to E-Books – Communities Need Access to E-Books are available from the e-books page on their website.
The ebooks briefing paper gives an overview of the current situation for ebooks in libraries and delivers 5 key messages:
- Equal access to materials – including e-books – is fundamental to public libraries’ mission and critical to ensuring that all citizens have access to the information they need
- Publishers’ policies are preventing the public from accessing e-books
- Borrowing e-books from libraries is increasingly popular
- Some book publishers are denying libraries access to e-books, while others significantly overprice titles
- Pilot programs are encouraging, but need to be more widely implemented
Thanks again to infoDOCKET for drawing our attention via Challenges Borrowing an e-Book from the Public Library to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio programme Spark‘s 24 minute segment E-Libary Letdown. The full panel discussion E-book Lending in Libraries is available on Spark‘s website, both podcasts are also available from iTunes.
Back in February, Peter wrote about how he kept fellow Prince Edward Islanders from borrowing an electronic edition of Learn Norwegian – Level 1: Introduction to Norwegian from the public library, in part because the Mac version of Overdrive’s software didn’t allow him to return it. “This is crazy, and we must demand better, more rational systems from our library, if only because we’re making up systems and processes here that will be with us for generations.”
Intrigued by Peter’s experience, Spark assembled a panel to discuss e-books, public libraries, and artificial scarcity.
infoDOCKET is reporting that
This commences on May 8th 2013, and will include distribution via OverDrive. It is unclear from the press, at time of writing, whether “all libraries” includes those outside the USA and Canada.
In an op-ed piece, E-Books and Democracy, for the New York Times Anthony W Marx (President of the New York Public Library) discusses this latest development and provides a useful summary of the state of play with the big six publishers and of the importance of ebooks in libraries.
Today Hachette, which had been a holdout, is joining the others in announcing that it will make e-books available to public libraries. This is a big step, as it represents, for the first time, a consensus among the Big Six, at least in principle, that their e-books should be made available to library users.