How have eBooks improved library service?

May 19th, 2011 · by spolanka · 3 Comments

It seems like most of the blog posts, articles, and presentations on eBooks focus on the challenges and other negative impacts of eBooks.  I don’t deny these exist, but would like to turn some attention to how eBooks improve library service.  When people ask me why they should invest in eBooks, I always respond with a couple of standard responses – 24/7 access to content anywhere for your patrons and no shelf required.   Today I can add to that list – patrons are asking for them.  I’m in the process of writing an article for the Special Libraries Association about improving service through ebooks.  I’d like to include some specific examples of how libraries have improved service with ebooks.  If you have an idea or example you can share with me for the article, please let me know.

Some topics I hope to explore are:

  • eReference and virtual reference services
  • patron driven acquisition and short-term loans for just-in-time collections
  • 24/7 access anywhere including mobile
  • downloadable content for personal devices
  • embedding eBooks in content management systems
  • lending eReaders

Categories: Ebook Readers,Library News

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3 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Tracey Thompson // May 19, 2011 at 5:23 pm

    It allows libraries to help their users with self-education, and it takes libraries where the users are.

    Thank you for the post. It is good to hear something positive!

  • 2 Win Hinkle // May 20, 2011 at 3:52 am

    The answers to you question are so obvious. Download the book from anywhere, anytime, under any circumstance. I’m on my fifth eBook. I would have read many more if the titles were at libraries. Librarians seem very reticent to acquire ebooks as they fear their jobs might be in jeopardy. They should be fearful. Library Science has become a useless major. Students should switch to Library Data Management. It’s the future, get ready for it.

  • 3 Sandra Pointon // Jun 10, 2011 at 9:27 am

    It provides patrons with a clear economic value for their library tax dollars – access to eReaders without the cost of purchase.