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If you only read one ebooks article… March 27, 2013

Posted by Mrs. J in the Library in Ebooks, Reflections.
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…make it THIS ONE!

David Vinjamuri at Forbes magazine has summed up concisely, neatly, and clearly that state of the library ebook market, and why it’s so darn dysfunctional.  In a succinct 3 “pages,” he covers part 1 of a series on how we got here, why we’re here, what everyone’s arguing about, and most importantly, what we can do to fix it.  Put simply, charge per circulation, not per ebook. 

If I’m not mistaken, this is how the U.K. does things for print books as well.  Perhaps we could learn some best practices from our colleagues across the pond?

The sad part is that I predict that publishers won’t play ball.  My prediction is that in 5 years, they’ll have driven their business into the ground and be out of the picture.  The world of book “publishing” or distribution will look VERY different.  My hope is that libraries lead the way and show consumers and authors alike that they are an asset to promoting books/ebooks/content in any format; my experience tells me to be more realistic.

Perhaps it’s just the pall of PSSA testing hanging over our whole school, but I’m just not feeling optimistic about school libraries’ (and by proxy, school districts’) ability to change quickly enough.

We are still struggling to get a qualified teacher-librarian in every school, never mind flexible scheduling and library assistants to help keep the library running smoothly enough to let said teacher-librarian do their job as a 21st century educator.  Ebooks are just one of many priorities, and it’s pretty far down the list.

I heartily agree with Mr. Vinjamuri.  I’m having difficulty, however, finding time to devote to publishers and their “war” against my school library when I am, at this very moment, 20 minutes away from my next class.  Right now, I have much larger issues to deal with that have to take precedence.

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