The Douglas County Libraries Pricing Comparison for May (PDF file) shows a continuing trend with library ebook prices running at an average of 4.6 times the consumer price. Also worthy of note is the fact that all 30 titles listed are available as ebooks to libraries through both 3M and OverDrive.
This month’s comparison is based on the New York Times bestseller lists to be published May 10, 2015. But it doesn’t seem to matter which bestseller list is used, the ratio during the last five months is between 4.6 to 1 and 6 to 1.
Looking back at the last few months we find:
- January 2015, New York Times, a ratio of 5.7
- February 2015, USA Today, a ratio of 6.0
- March 2015, New York Times, a ratio of 5.0
- April 2015, Digital Book World, a ratio of 5.3
- May 2015, New York Times, a ratio of 4.6
As this blog has noted many times before, libraries can’t meet the demand for ebooks paying five to six times the consumer price. This pricing model is simply not sustainable.