Picking up where our lively and vociferous conversation about potential models for library e-book lending left off, today’s #followreader chat from 4-5pm ET will look more specifically at ways libraries can break through the strategic and practical impasses associated with current e-book digital rights management.
- Hw can DRM for library e-book lending look like balance the needs of publishers and authors to be compensated for their content, and for libraries to serve their patrons?
- Could a consortium of libraries have greater bargaining power with distributors and publishers on DRM?
- How much would librarians be willing to pay for publishers to offer more latitude in DRM?
- To what extent does cumbersome DRM encourage serious piracy while dissuading the average reader from adopting e-books?
For more background over the librarian debate on this issue, check out these blog posts:
“I strongly feel that eBooks & eAudioBooks are only used on the margins of our library communities. Not because people don’t have the technology–they do. And not because they don’t want eBooks–they do. But because using library eBooks is such a horrible pain, sometimes impossible, due to the restrictions that DRM places on us (which affects the subsequent issues of licensing & copyright). . . .
I also chime in as a frustrated customer, who recently purchased an Android HTC Eris smart phone. I have a Mac at home, and a PC at work. This means that I have three separate “groupings” of library eBook content that I can access, depending on what device I’m using at the time. My library subscribes to several eBook collections: Overdrive, MyiLibrary, NetLibrary, TumbleBooks, Safari Tech Books, and Learning Express eBooks. What I can access on each depends heavily on my device. Why? Digital Rights Management.”
At least SOME of the problem is on the design and usability end (of at least Overdrive). But there HAS to be an easier way to manage DRM concerns, like allowing someone to check out stuff, but then adding one extra step or something that makes you “prove” you’ve deleted the file? Netflix’s digital downloads and the movie rental part of iTunes are similar (except for that whole for-profit thing) to a library setup. They also deal with people “borrowing” their stuff, some of it even digitally. But it’s easy. Why can’t our library vendors (Overdrive, Netlibrary, etc) also build something easy to use and manage?
To join today’s #followreader conversation from 4-5pm ET, here’s what to do:
- Just before 4pm ET today, log in to Twitter or whatever interface you prefer. (We recommend Tweetchat, which refreshes quickly and automatically loads your hashtag when you are in the discussion.)
- To follow the discussion, run a search for #followreader
- I’ll start by asking a few questions, before opening up the discussion to the group.
- To post a comment to the discussion, make sure that the hashtag #followreader is in each tweet you write.
Looking forward to chatting with you!