Publishers Need to Offer Popular E-Books through Libraries

Publishers Need to Offer Popular E-Books through Libraries
Currently only a few publishers and distributors offer popular e-books in a manner that allows libraries to license and “lend” them or check them out to the public. E-books are a very exciting format that should dramatically change the “book” experience with the incorporation of multimedia, links to related sources, and of social networking.

A group of library folks have issued an Open Letter to E-Book Creators and Sellers encouraging them to take advantage of library buying power and make their popular e-book titles available to libraries and through them to the public. Done properly, everyone is a winner with libraries offering popular e-books.

Libraries and their customers have a long and mutually beneficial relationship with authors, publishers, and vendors, based on the printed word – books. Now, with the emergence of popular e-books and e-book readers, libraries are positioned to continue that partnership with these exciting new products.

Libraries have much to offer e-book sellers as you work to establish a new successful business model around the e-book format. At the same time libraries need e-book providers to offer e-pub materials in ways that enable and support use by libraries and library users. Here is the deal.

We will help you sell popular e-books.

- When users find e-books in library catalogs or on websites, they can borrow them and may have the option to rent or buy them.

- Libraries buy lots of books, spending about $2 billion annually.

- Libraries are a big part of the reading public’s lives. They help people develop a passion for reading as children and indulge it as adults. Public libraries alone report 1.4 billion visits and 2.1 billion circulations annually.

- Library staff will develop customers for you. Librarians are great at helping the public learn about technology and will help readers learn about e-books and e-book readers

In order for us to help you sell and promote your e-books, we need you to sell or license them to us in a manner that works with our business model.

- Provide for electronic check-out to customers similar to how we lend hard copy items.

- Offer popular titles at reasonable prices.

- Provide e-books in standard format with standard digital rights management.

- Offer them to individual libraries and allow libraries to pool resources by selling to groups and consortia.

Books! Books! Books! – Writers, book sellers, and libraries have a long and mutually supportive relationship based on books! Please work with libraries and help us offer new popular e-book titles to libraries so we can continue this relationship as we move into this exciting new future!

Thank you for your consideration!

Linda Crowe
Executive Director
Pacific Library Partnership

Charlie Parker
Executive Director
Tampa Bay Library Consortium

Henry Bankhead
Principal Librarian
Los Gatos Public Library

Al Carlson
System Administrator
Tampa Bay Library Consortium

Heather Teysko
Manager
Califa

Chad Mairn, M.L.I.S.
Information Services Librarian
St. Petersburg College

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