Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing, and Publishing ~

The E-Book Wars & Your Public Library . . .


Concerning the fight between legacy publishers and Amazon over what seems to be the dominance of e-books over print, I feel the real battleground is at the libraries.

You can track this battle with the links I provided in the previous post, More on E-Books & Libraries . . .

Admittedly, my coverage is limited to the U. S. A. but so is the biggest production of e-books.

I would love to hear about this issue from those of you in countries other than the U. S. A. in our Comments :-)

Still, learning about what’s happening here may give those in other countries the ammunition they need in future battles

This post was stimulated by an article in The Kansas City Star, Kansas State Library’s Facebook campaign targets top publishers’ e-book policies.

Also, you can visit The Kansas State Library’s Facebook page, The Big 6 — ebooks in libraries.

From the newspaper article:

“So far, the State Library’s Facebook page lists 11 titles from Hachette, Penguin, Macmillan and Simon & Schuster that are not available to libraries as e-books.

“The books range from Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling’s new novel, The Casual Vacancy; to New York Times forecaster Nate Silver’s nonfiction work, The Signal and the Noise, which is in high demand due to his success in closely projecting the outcome of the presidential elections in 2008 and this year.

“The facebook page lists a number of other e-books that are available to libraries, but at prices as high $85 a copy, much more than the cover price of a regular book.”

The article goes further in explaining the ridiculously high prices legacy publishers are charging libraries as well as their strange policy of limiting the number of check-outs before another payment is demanded.

As far as whether an e-book is owned or merely licensed, an article in Library Journal details the attempt of OverDrive to rewrite a contract to unfairly revoke a library’s ownership of their e-books—read Kansas State Librarian Argues Consortium Owns, Not Licenses, Content from OverDrive.

From that article:

“Budler [the state librarian] is asserting ownership of all the consortium’s content on OverDrive’s platform, which represents a $568,000 investment from December 2005 to June 2010… Budler refused to sign a renewal contract with OverDrive not only because it would have raised fees nearly 700 percent by 2014 but also would have rewritten the clause upon which Budler is basing her right to transfer content.”

And, from the State Library of Kansas’ own news page, an article—Library’s Digital Shelves Missing Nearly 90% of Bestsellers—that ends by urging the reader to obtain more information about e-lending by visiting your local library

More from this Literary-War Correspondent as situations develop………
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9 responses to “The E-Book Wars & Your Public Library . . .

  1. deadeyescribe November 16, 2012 at 10:21 pm

    Crazy. I’m glad you accepted the position of “Literary-War Correspondent,” Alexander. :-)

    I ***love*** my public libraries and had no idea there was a state library Facebook page. Amazing and informative coverage. Stay steady and safe there on the front, Sir.

    Like

    • Alexander M Zoltai November 16, 2012 at 10:25 pm

      Thanks, Simone—thought you might like what your state library is doing :-)

      BTW, a Literary-War Correspondent is paid a very good salary but it’s held in escrow until they die

      Like

      • deadeyescribe November 16, 2012 at 10:37 pm

        And thank you. I’m showing your post to the librarians at the prairie library in Kansas, for sure!

        Weird they do that with your salary. It’s the same deal here being a scribe for the whole town…

        Like

        • Alexander M Zoltai November 16, 2012 at 10:39 pm

          Yeah, Simone, they’re both tough jobs but somebody’s gotta do ‘em

          Like

          • deadeyescribe November 16, 2012 at 10:43 pm

            Ha, ha. They are lucky you and I are peaceful people (well you are anyway)…otherwise, there’d be a mutiny. :-)

            Like

            • Alexander M Zoltai November 16, 2012 at 11:12 pm

              “Literary Mutiny”

              Hmmm

              Like

              • deadeyescribe November 16, 2012 at 11:23 pm

                Sounds like a plan! …wheels turning…

                Like

  2. Pingback: Georgetown Library Book Sale: My Haul | lasesana

  3. Pingback: Libraries are Forever: E-books and Print Books Can Coexist « pigeon weather productions

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