Internet Librarian – Ebooks: Putting the Issues on the Table

Internet Librarian Conference 2011 – Ebooks:  Putting the Issues on the Table

Presenters: Bobbi L. Newman – Learning Consultant and author Librarian by Day blog,  Sarah Houghton – Asst. Director San Rafael Public Library and author, Amy Affelt – Director of Database Research Compass Lexecon, and Faith Ward – Librarian Garrison Forest School

These notes are my interpretation of the presentation.  Best efforts were made to ensure accuracy.

Bobbi Newman – small percent of the US population owns an eReader according to Pew Internet Research study. Digital divide – not just about having an eReader to read eBooks – must have internet access at home and a computer capable of hosting Adobe Digital Editions.  2,000 titles is not an opening day collection – you need more titles and a long term plan for eBooks.  Kindle library borrowing – very happy about the smooth transition to getting books onto devices. We got a bad deal – Amazon has access to lots of statistics and they are not sharing those with us.

Sarah Houghton – We don’t read the fine print, so we will take whatever we are given. It’s important to offer the content to our patrons, but we need to take the time to read the fine print and understand the terms of service. Sarah has issues with the Kindle/OverDrive deal b/c of the final checkout of materials happening at Amazon.  She agrees with Bobbi that they have too much data and stats on library users, and much of this probably violates our privacy policies with users.

Amy Affelt – her company works with a consulting firm who support expert witnesses who testify at trials.  She doesn’t want to buy an entire eBook.  She wants to buy a chapter, a chart, or a piece of data.  She is generally buying this for someone else and wants to deliver this content to other people. She wants to be a conduit to find the information and get it to the person who needs it.  She wants to pay for the right to read the content across all platforms.

Faith Ward – About a year ago she began studying how children read on an eBook vs. a print book.  She has clear evidence that her 1st graders were motivated by the devices and wanted to read on them.  However, they made more mistakes when reading the e version.  She feels it’s her duty to educate parents and homeroom teachers about eBooks and readers.  Students will be able to read print and non-print texts is now a statement in some new standards.  She feels strongly that librarians need to champion ebooks and eReading within our communities.