An Inconvenient Truth About E-books

An Inconvenient Truth About E-books
As we rush headlong into e-books, we’re not considering how our libraries will migrate forward in time, protecting personal and institutional investments. Paper books are readable by anyone who’s literate, but e-books require a reader, and DRM ensures that there will be difficulties in the future. Worse, there are several different file formats and different DRMs used by Apple, Adobe and Amazon.
The net effect is that our collections have to be considered temporary and expendable at the whim of the retailers, and our ability to pass books on to heirs or colleagues becomes limited in a fashion that hinders human knowledge.”


What you say is certainly true, however, as the Director of a small, public library I view your statement about e-book collections being considered both "temporary and expendable" as pertinent to my print collection too. We don't archive books. We weed them if they haven't circulated within a set amount of time. My biggest problem is stretching my collection budget to include the newest formats.

Digital rights and specific formats cause problems for libraries. Can we skip the middle man and go directly to publishers to buy our e-books? Our existing structure hasn't been greatly successful for libraries and their patrons.

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