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Old 11-20-2011, 11:51 AM   #1
astrodad
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Public Library eBook rentals

I'm just now getting into the use of my public library's electronic resources and all I can say is: blah!

NOTHING is available. How in the world can you possibly have only ONE copy of an ebook available to license. How stupid is that? I went looking for Star Wars books, and of the 150+ titles available, only 16 of them had "available copies".

Anyway, just wanted to vent.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:04 PM   #2
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only 16 of them had "available copies".
How many of them do you need at once?

Hop onto the wait lists and then it will usually work out that you get one or two a week - hopefully not 30 in one week.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:54 PM   #3
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Yep, I keep both a hold list and a wishlist on my library's website. The holds come in faster than you would think, and on my wishlist of more than 100 titles there are often a dozen that are available for checkout. A system like this will reduce the frustration of looking for a library book to read.
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Old 11-20-2011, 12:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abookreader View Post
How many of them do you need at once?

Hop onto the wait lists and then it will usually work out that you get one or two a week - hopefully not 30 in one week.
The 16 available were none of the ones I wanted.

I'm on the wait list for the ones I want, but so are 35 other people.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:07 PM   #5
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As eBooks get more popular and thanks to Kindle borrowing, the lines have gotten longer. The only thing you can do is wait.
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Old 11-20-2011, 01:07 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pidgeon92 View Post
Yep, I keep both a hold list and a wishlist on my library's website. The holds come in faster than you would think, and on my wishlist of more than 100 titles there are often a dozen that are available for checkout. A system like this will reduce the frustration of looking for a library book to read.
Sounds like a very good system! Getting by with library lending does take a little bit of an effort, but is well worth it. If you are too set on getting very specific books in a hurry, maybe it's not for you.
While waiting for something that may not come in for quite some time I browse around and find other things to read and by doing that widen my perspective. I borrow books I may not have thought twice about otherwise. Sometimes I love them and sometimes I hate them and return them right away. No big deal, since I didn't pay anything for them.
And then, suddenly that book I almost forgot about comes in.
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Old 11-20-2011, 02:13 PM   #7
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Re: returning them right away

Please wait at least 24 hours to do so, or Overdrive patrons risk having their accounts (temporarily) frozen.
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Old 11-21-2011, 02:10 AM   #8
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When I first got my reader 3 years ago and discovered I could check out digital library books, it was wonderful. They were all "checked in."

I haven't bothered trying for well over a year now. I'm sure that's in good part because I have a mile-long queue of indie books to read and review, but it's also because books were never available. I had to wait months and months to read *any* of the books, and that was really frustrating. Not only that, but the choices didn't seem to grow much. Maybe I should look again, perhaps they've caught up now?
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeaBookGuy View Post
Re: returning them right away

Please wait at least 24 hours to do so, or Overdrive patrons risk having their accounts (temporarily) frozen.
It looks like the risk is for repeat offenders. I accidentally checked out a PDF rather than EPUB version of a book, so I immediatly returned the PDF. No warning notice yet.
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Old 11-21-2011, 11:59 AM   #10
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It looks like the risk is for repeat offenders. I accidentally checked out a PDF rather than EPUB version of a book, so I immediatly returned the PDF. No warning notice yet.
No doubt. I remember one person said they had checked out a series of childrens books that were very short, and read them and returned several in a day, and her account was suspended. One here and there will probably not flag anything.
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Old 11-21-2011, 01:10 PM   #11
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With my local library they have one "digital branch" serving a county wide library system that has 41 B&M branches so even with multiple copies waits can be long sometimes even though they get multiple copies on a lot of titles. It would be nice if they'd get more copies, but the cost of just offering Overdrive can be pretty expensive even before "buying" books, audiobooks, etc. and then often times a digital copy costs them more than they pay for a physical paper copy. Plus I'm sure they're trying more for number of different titles (they have just over 22,000 titles) than multiple copies at this stage of things.




This article might be of interest to some, it's about the Salt Lake Public Library and the costs of offering ebooks...

Quote:
The Salt Lake Library pays $12,000 a year for the OverDrive online checkout service, then pays a fee per title to rent out books to patrons.
Quote:
Digital copies of new titles purchased from Overdrive tend to be on average about $8 more than a print edition and can jump as high as $75.99 for popular titles.
Quote:
For example, if the library wants to purchase five titles of John Grisham’s “The Litigators,” then it would have to pay $184.95 at $36.99 per book.

Print copies of the same book cost $28.95.
http://www.deseretnews.com/article/7...for-print.html
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Old 11-21-2011, 03:32 PM   #12
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That's interesting AnemicOak, the question is, why on earth is an ebook more costly for the library?!

As for the OP, I've been a library regular for years (borrowing physical books), and on the occasions when I've wanted to borrow a popular book, I've always had to accept that I have to reserve it and wait my turn. So therefore I've mainly used the library for available books, while new & popular books I'm desperate to read I buy.

Ebooks are only going to make that even more of an issue as there is still a limit to the available ebooks, only far more people wanting to borrow it because they don't even need to leave their house to do so.
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Old 11-21-2011, 03:36 PM   #13
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I started a thread about this a few weeks ago, about how Kindle lending has vastly increased wait times for library books (my small-town library belongs to a state-wide digital consortium, so we're competing for books with Portland), BUT

I've also begun to see 'Advantage Titles' - available to my library but not necessarily to all libraries. So some libraries seem to be able to buy extra books.

Kindle lending has overwhelmed the system, but I think this will shake out over time.
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Old 11-21-2011, 07:50 PM   #14
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That's interesting AnemicOak, the question is, why on earth is an ebook more costly for the library?!
I would imagine it's because you aren't just buying the e-book, but you are paying Overdrive to manage the collection, including the checking the book in and out. But there could be more to it than that.
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Old 11-21-2011, 08:00 PM   #15
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That's interesting AnemicOak, the question is, why on earth is an ebook more costly for the library?!

As for the OP, I've been a library regular for years (borrowing physical books), and on the occasions when I've wanted to borrow a popular book, I've always had to accept that I have to reserve it and wait my turn. So therefore I've mainly used the library for available books, while new & popular books I'm desperate to read I buy.

Ebooks are only going to make that even more of an issue as there is still a limit to the available ebooks, only far more people wanting to borrow it because they don't even need to leave their house to do so.
I think ebooks make it easier for people to check out library books. Instead of having to get in your car and drive to the library you can sit at your computer from home and check out a book. And if it's easier then there will be less sales of the physical books. So I can see why publishers charge more for the ebook copy - it will most likely be checked out more times than a physical copy.
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