Tag Archives: OverDrive

Booklist Online Articles Feature Follett, NetLibrary, and Overdrive

offtheshelf-f1.jpg Those of you interested in learning more about Follett and Overdrive should take a look at the recent  Off The Shelf column in Booklist Online - E-book Distributors for the Public and School Library Markets.  The article provides an overview of the content, features, and business models of both of these distributors.

NetLibrary, due to it’s recent transformation, has a feature article in the Nov. 1, 2008 Booklist issue (and Booklist Online)

Academic aggregators - ebrary, EBL, and Myilibrary – were featured back in May, 2008.

All articles are linked from No Shelf Required, just check out the articles link.

OverDrive now works with Zune

If you are one of the 8,500 libraries using the OverDrive Media Console for digital audiobooks, you now have a new feature – compatibility with Microsoft’s Zune.  Both DRM-free and DRM-protected (Digital Rights Management) audiobooks are compatible.  This now opens up the direct transfer of audiofiles to Zune, iPod, and virtually all other mp3 devices.

For the full story, check out OverDrive’s press release.

or, skip the full story and just download the Media Console.

DRM – What is it and why should libraries care?

What is DRM?

DRM stands for Digital Rights Management, coding added to digital content to control access.  DRM prevents copying, editing, and sharing of digital files.   You may have come across DRM in your personal use of digital music or digital video recorders.  More importantly, if your library offers or plans to offer ebooks, audiobooks, DVDs, and other media, usage of this content will be controlled by DRM.

Why is DRM used?

To protect copyright. Media and publishing companies want to protect their content from piracy, illegal copying or editing, and sharing, ie. to control access.

DRM is controversial.

Many people feel that DRM prohibits the fair use of media by the majority of the general public.  For example, some DRM programs prevent the creation of backup copies of music and DVDs, printing of ebooks, recording of TV shows or movies for home viewing, and the selection of some hand held devices, since Sony and Apple use different DRM software.  Additionally, DRM is now supported by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.  The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a consumer advocacy group for the networked world says “the DMCA has become a serious threat that jeopardizes fair use, impedes competition and innovation, chills free expression and scientific research, and interferes with computer intrusion laws.”

Why should I care about DRM?

DRM is particularly relevant to libraries since many are providing digital media in the form of ebooks, audiobooks, digital music and videos, and software and games.  Chances are the media you are purchasing to deliver digitally is controlled with DRM software.  For libraries, the DRM software prevents copying and editing of digital content, controls printing of ebooks, and magically makes the digital content “disappear” after a due date, even if patrons have downloaded a copy to their personal computer, external storage device, or a hand held device.

If you purchase ebooks or audiobooks from aggregators and distributors such as:  EBL, ebrary, Follett Digital Resources, Gale Virtual Reference Library, NetLibrary, and OverDrive, you will have digital content with DRM, so it’s important to understand DRM and how it is used by each of the vendors.
More information on DRM can be found here:

American Library Association

Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF)

Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC)

How Stuff Works

Microsoft

Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA)

Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA)

Independent Publishers – Meet Constellation, your answer to eBooks

I think you all know that I love ebooks, particularly in my reference collection.  My main gripe, the small independent publishers don’t have the resources to publish their titles electronically.  Now, there is a solution.  Yesterday, the Perseus Books Group launched Constellation – an eBook solution for independent publishers.

Constellation will convert print ready PDFs into .epub and other formats in order to distribute them to various eBook content providers.  Ebrary and Overdrive are both on the list, in addition to Amazon and Sony.

Librarians, spread the word to your favorite independent publisher.   Check out the press release from Perseus.

Ohio eBook Project

The State Library of Ohio has a really neat eBook project for libraries of all types.  Here is an excerpt from their website:

The Ohio eBook Project is a multi—type library consortium that’s membership includes academic libraries, public libraries, school libraries and special libraries. This project allows Ohio libraries to affordably obtain a digital material collection.

Launched in 2005, this statewide project allows libraries to provide digital books (including eBooks and eAudiobooks), eVideo and eMusic to library customers at a considerable savings.

The State Library of Ohio is contracted with OverDrive, Inc. to make this project a reality. OverDrive is a well-known digital materials provider to libraries throughout the country. The State Library assumed the project’s start-up cost, purchases for the collection, and pays the monthly maintenance fee.

As of May 2008, over 11,834 unique library patrons have enjoyed the Ohio eBook Project holdings. The holdings include 6292 copies of 4395 individual titles of eAudiobooks, eBooks, eVideo, and eMusic.