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Old 02-15-2012, 10:25 AM   #16
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My county library requires you to live in the county in order to borrow e-books, and I expect that more libraries will have such policies. I could see libraries for e-books that are more regional, which would mean that the e-books are paid for at a more regional level.

Allowing people to borrow e-books from a library other than their own just means that someone else pays for the books, which isn't sustainable.
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Old 02-15-2012, 10:30 AM   #17
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My "local" ebook library isn't my local library; it's a state digital consortium to which my local library belongs.

I don't think there's a real reason such consortia need to be city/county/state geographic in theme, i.e. I don't know if there isn't a real reason that libraries could develop consortia that serve, say, remote rural areas, encourage rural libraries to join, etc. Or the same for, say, community colleges or state universities. But the basic building blocks of public libraries are local because they are funded by local taxes.
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Old 02-15-2012, 10:35 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by QuantumIguana View Post
Allowing people to borrow e-books from a library other than their own just means that someone else pays for the books, which isn't sustainable.
Reciprocal borrowing around here has been in place as long as I can remember.
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Old 02-15-2012, 10:37 AM   #19
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Around here, a number of smaller county library systems in the more rural part of the state joined forces about fifty years ago to form a cooperative library system. The county libraries remain technically independent, but the cooperative runs the digital "card catalog" and the Overdrive system, and interlibrary loans between those libraries in the system are free. It works well, and gives people in those counties access to more resources than would otherwise be available.
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Old 02-15-2012, 10:38 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Joykins View Post
I don't think there's a real reason such consortia need to be city/county/state geographic in theme, i.e. I don't know if there isn't a real reason that libraries could develop consortia that serve, say, remote rural areas, encourage rural libraries to join, etc. Or the same for, say, community colleges or state universities. But the basic building blocks of public libraries are local because they are funded by local taxes.
Several of the reciprocal libraries I belong to are regional (multi-county, multi-city) in nature for their digital (OverDrive, etc) services.
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Old 02-15-2012, 10:46 AM   #21
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Unfortunately, here in Minnesota, the largest county library system - Hennepin County - decided as of 1/2/2012, AFTER ALLOWING RECIPROCAL BORROWING for years, to ONLY ALLOW RESIDENTS OF THE COUNTY TO BORROW E-BOOKS.

SUPPOSEDLY, this decision was made only after "much discussion", and solely because they wanted to "protect these resources for our tax-paying residents". My guess is this narrow-minded, parochial policy will shortly spread to every other county of any size here, and pretty soon only people that live on THIS side of the street will be allowed to have an ebook from Dakota County, and only those on THAT side of the street will be able to get one from Ramsey County, and borrowers from WHEREVER they live will see reduced service and a smaller selection.

Personally, if somebody puts Amazon and B&N into a Netflix-style service, and charges what Netflix does for movies ($8/month), I'm all over it. If it works for movies it fer-sher ought to work for books.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:01 AM   #22
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Reciprocity for e-books hasn't been figured out yet. With paper books, there's no problem. I can get a book from one of the other county libraries if it isn't available in mine, and someone from one of the other counties in the metro area can get a book from my county library.

With e-books, the reciprocity doesn't work so well. If my library doesn't have e-books, so I get e-books from yours, that's not reciprocity. I would just be shifting the burden away from my library to your library.

Why should Hennepin County taxes pay for the e-books in Anoka County? Reciprocity works when there is a more or less even flow, when books are as likely to flow in one direction as in another. Allowing people in Anoka County to check out e-books from Hennepin County just mean that the tax burden gets shifted. Why offer e-books if you can just shove the cost to someone else? I'd be in favor of a metro area consortium for e-books, it would spread the funding across all of the metro area, so no one is able to shove the costs onto someone else.

A consortium of libraries to pool paying for e-books is reciprocal. Everyone has shared in the funding. It should be all the same to the publishers, as they get paid for X number of times the book is downloaded.

Last edited by QuantumIguana; 02-15-2012 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:05 AM   #23
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Would this work as a possible solution?

Eliminate any fees associated with the loaning of any ebook by a library. The library will simply purchase X copies from wherever and loan them out as usual.

The ebooks will be loaned to local residents first and foremost. This includes being bumped to the top of any waiting list(s).

If the ebook is not currently loaned out and is just “sitting there”, it can be loaned to a non-local borrower. If a local borrower comes along and wants the ebook and they are all loaned out, any loans to a non-local will be temporarily revoked.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:06 AM   #24
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Quote:
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With e-books, the reciprocity doesn't work so well. If my library doesn't have e-books, so I get e-books from yours, that's not reciprocity. I would just be shifting the burden away from my library to your library.
So far, it's working here; and I'll take advantage of it as long as it's in place.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:07 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by QuantumIguana View Post
A consortium of libraries to pool paying for e-books is reciprocal. Everyone has shared in the funding. It should be all the same to the publishers, as they get paid for X number of times the book is downloaded.
Correction: ... as they get paid for X number of times the book is purchased.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:09 AM   #26
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Would this work as a possible solution?

Eliminate any fees associated with the loaning of any ebook by a library. The library will simply purchase X copies from wherever and loan them out as usual.

The ebooks will be loaned to local residents first and foremost. This includes being bumped to the top of any waiting list(s).

If the ebook is not currently loaned out and is just “sitting there”, it can be loaned to a non-local borrower. If a local borrower comes along and wants the ebook and they are all loaned out, any loans to a non-local will be temporarily revoked.
If the current reciprocity arrangement becomes a problem, then yes. Otherwise; the wheel ain't broke, so it doesn't need fixing.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:18 AM   #27
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Correction: ... as they get paid for X number of times the book is purchased.
More downloads equals more purchases.

The book can be only be downloaded X number of times before a new license must be purchased. After the book is downloaded X number of times, the library has to purchase a new license if they want to continue loaning out the book.

Imagine you have a metro area with ten library systems, and for a given book there is demand for 1000 downloads between the ten library systems. 1000 downloads are still purchased, whether the ten library systems each buy their own licenses, or whether there is a consortium of the ten libraries pooling their resources.
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Old 02-15-2012, 11:40 AM   #28
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The book can be only be downloaded X number of times before a new license must be purchased. After the book is downloaded X number of times, the library has to purchase a new license if they want to continue loaning out the book.
Absolutely not. That is one of the advantages that an ebook has over the paper version, it does not wear out. There is no valid reason that an ebook would ever need to be repurchased.
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:02 PM   #29
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Absolutely not. That is one of the advantages that an ebook has over the paper version, it does not wear out. There is no valid reason that an ebook would ever need to be repurchased.
I have given you nothing but facts. You might wish that a library could loan out a e-book forever, but that is not how it actually works.

He is the way that it works: a library buys a license for an e-book. That license allows the library to loan the e-book out x number of times. When that number of downloads is reached, the library must either purchase a new license or must cease loaning out the book.

Thus, a consortium of libraries pooling their purchases would result in the same number of purchases, as the number of downloads would remain the same, and the number of downloads determines the number of purchases.
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Old 02-15-2012, 12:04 PM   #30
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The book might not need to be repurchased at full price, but if it is published by Hachette, the license will have to be renewed, for a fee, after the ebook has been loaned 26 times. I believe they are the only publisher that does thus, but I wouldn't be surprised if other publishers eventually follow in their footsteps... Of those who haven't disallowed ebook lending altogether.

Read more here.
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