In the same rooms where the final planning sessions establishing the DPLA were held five years ago, Executive Director Dan Cohen announced that the archive now held more than 16 million items from 2,350 member institutions and is on track to have hubs in all 50 states. The Open eBooks program, launched in 2016 to provide free access … Continue reading DPLAfest: Inclusion, Community, and Outreach
At many libraries, digital “cards”—which usually consist simply of numbers that patrons use to access digital items—have become standard. The Harris County (Tex.) Public Library (HCPL) introduced its version, the iKnow Digital Access Card, as a way to “reduce as many barriers as possible,” says Library Director Edward Melton. IKnow card holders can access the … Continue reading The Future of Library Cards
Syndetics Unbound Syndetic Solutions and LibraryThing for Libraries were designed to make online library catalogs more informational and interactive. ProQuest has now combined these two services into Syndetics Unbound, which provides 16 different catalog enrichment elements in one service. Many of the features will be familiar to those who are used to shopping for books … Continue reading Improving Library Websites
Hoopla Hoopla, launched in 2013 by Midwest Tape, provides single-platform access to most major types of digital holdings: audiobooks, ebooks, video, and music. Patrons can access content either by streaming it from the Hoopla website or by using the mobile app, which allows both streaming and temporary downloads for offline access. Items are automatically removed … Continue reading Online Streaming Options
ALA president-elect James G. “Jim” Neal opened his segment of “Brave New World: The Future of Collections in Digital Times,” a program at the IFLA 2016 World Library and Information Congress in Columbus, Ohio, with a warning. Digital content is growing exponentially. The world produces daily ebooks, online games, 3D-printed work, MOOCs, social media content, … Continue reading The Future Is Digital
Carolyn Anthony, director of Skokie (Ill.) Public Library and cochair of American Library Association’s Digital Content Working Group (DCWG), kicked things off. She shared insights gained during meetings with major publishers in December 2015. For instance, publishers generally continue to show greater willingness to provide better pricing and more flexible licensing terms. Penguin Random House … Continue reading Making Progress with Digital Content
On the one hand, some important information from previous studies has been confirmed: “Patrons purchased 50% of the ebooks they read in the past 12 months and received 50% for free.” In other words, we’re still helping people find ebooks, and they buy about half of them. What the library doesn’t buy, of course, does … Continue reading Have Ebook Readers Given Up on the Library?
The surprising answer, argues Johnson, is that they are doing pretty well. Musicians are definitely not making as much from Spotify and Pandora as they made from CDs. On the other hand, they are making quite a bit more on live performances. There seem to be, in fact, more musicians making a living at it … Continue reading Creative Apocalypse: Canceled or Delayed?
At the same time, ALA and libraries have been exploring additional options for empowering our users to discover and publish digital content, considering privacy and preservation concerns, and expanding the lens of focus to other forms of digital content. The most recent round of John S. and James L. Knight Foundation challenge grants intersects in … Continue reading Empowering Libraries to Innovate
The good news for libraries is that investment in drivers of inclusive growth—public services such as schools, libraries, and telecommunications infrastructure—represents a critically important risk mitigation strategy. Education and knowledge are essential to successful communities, organizations, and economies, and they represent the future for the information profession if, of course, library professionals keep pace with … Continue reading Transforming the Library Profession
Then, before reading, what if users had to navigate a complex registration process that could take well over an hour and create user accounts with the for-profit providers, who then try to sell them books while they browse for something to borrow? While some libraries have outsourced library services to private contractors, this approach has … Continue reading Click, Click, Read
When collection budgets are squeezed and shelf space is at a premium, digital collection assets can shine … assuming they’re available and affordable. Librarian Jessamyn West wrote at librarian.net in a 2012 article “Let’s Be Honest about the Ebook Situation” that several large publishers, including Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, and Hachette Book Group, refused to sell … Continue reading Building Out the Book Niches