Kindles Will Circulate at Concord Library

Wicked Local reports: The Concord Free Public Library has started to circulate five Kindle e-book readers. Each Kindle circulates for a two-week period and comes loaded with several regional travel guides and approximately 50 popular titles including “Freedom: a Novel” by Jonathan Franzen, “Moonlight Mile”by Dennis Lehane, “Tinkers” by Paul Harding, “At Home: A Short History of Private Life” by Bill Bryson, and “Grand Design” by Stephen Hawking. Also included are such local favorites as “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott, “Walden and Other Writings” by Henry David Thoreau, and “Wicked: Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West” by Gregory Maguire.


At Innisfil Public Library we started circulating 6 Sony Readers preloaded with a variety of titles, including YA, children's novels, and non-fiction and fiction for adults. We were getting a lot of questions about ebook readers in relation to our ebook collection; so we decided to circulate a few so people could try them out. I know there are a few other libraries in Ontario that are looking into circulating readers as well, some have probably already started.

In case you're wondering, Innisfil is located in Ontario, Canada. We're a mixed rural and urban township located about 1 hour north of Toronto.

What a shocking waste of resources. With this application, print books are definitely ahead.

The Kindles can be used to serve the needs of library members that want to get a book in large print.

I agree that if the library is going to have a program where they buy Kindles they should explain the logic behind what they are doing. If the logic is "Lookie this them here Kindle is all electronical. We should have some elec-tronical things here at our liebrary" then I am against the library buying them. If 5 Kindles were purchased as a way to access books in large print I think the purchase might be wise.

Explain how it is a waste of resources.

Library had to pay for the devices. We can assume they purchased the cheaper wi-fi Kindle at $139. The Kindle cost $695. (story said they bought 5) Why not just buy books with that 700? What is being accomplished by having these Kindles circulate except as a nice promotion of the Kindle? How is it the job of the library to promote the Kindle?

So under the plan the library did they bought 5 Kindles and 50 books for each Kindle. Would have been way cheaper just to buy the 50 books.

If they bought all 50 kindle e-books at $9.99 or less (which is probably a safe assumption) then they spent, at most, $639 to have a fully loaded circulating Kindle. Odds are it is less, because several titles presumably were classic novels which cost less on the Kindle (for example, our library downloaded Mary Shelley's Frankenstein for exactly $0.00, which is far less than what a book would cost).

Also, as our library found out, if you own more than one kindle that are tied to the same account, you don't have to pay to get the same download on the extra kindles. Pay to download it once, and all your Kindles receive it. So the math gets even better.

So, all five kindles, fully loaded, would've cost this library less than $1200. For that you get the equivalent of 250 books. Each book then cost the library about $4.80, which is way less than most libraries pay for a new book.

(Now, I understand why having 250 e-books is not the same as having 250 books sitting on the shelves. Let's try not to open up that argument)

I don't agree with the idea that we would not circulate something because it "promotes" that item. Every single thing we buy "promotes" that item.

Your logic=

I don't want to buy this new Celine Dion album because all it does is promote Celine Dion, and lord knows I don't want to do that.

This doesn't fly.

I found it funny that at the article there was a link to a local bank/financial institution that was offering a free Kindle if you opened an account with them. That beats a toaster. You can see the offer from the bank here:

Our library has been circulating 2 Kindles with content for about 12 weeks now. Fun times. The hold list on them is outrageous.

I'm not sure how libraries are able to do this legally, especially in regard to the Kindle's TOS.

This quote, especially, seems to betray a strong disregard for copyright law: "if you own more than one kindle that are tied to the same account, you don't have to pay to get the same download on the extra kindles. Pay to download it once, and all your Kindles receive it."

It is not a disregard for copyright since Amazon had negotiated with the publisher's that own the copyright to distribute in this fashion.

The TOS is another discussion, and at some point Amazon could say stop or be taken to court.

For those who advocate the Kindle as a source of "large print books": Check with your local library for the blind and physically handicapped. Each state has at least one. Through that library, your patrons who have difficulties with regular print materials can have easy access to huge collections of large print and recorded books.

The link you point to provides audiobooks and braille. Don't see anything about large print.

Also the index of Braille books seems to stop in 2005.

Sorry, should have been more explicit. The National Library Service provides Braille and audio books. The state Regional Libraries provide those plus large print. "Where Libraries Are Located" provides the contact information for your local library.

The major exception is music materials. Those are mostly available only through NLS, regardless of format.

The link "Read Braille Book Review" points to the lists of Braille books published through December 2010. The annual lists there go through 2009.

Isn't the real problem with the combination of Kindles and public libraries the fact that the Amazon format is proprietary and the Kindles are not usable with the e-book lending model of OverDrive? Aren't we shooting ourselves in the foot by promoting the Kindle? (And it is a promotion in parts of the country where people still have no other way to see a Kindle first-hand before purchasing one.)

Many of the library provided resources are proprietary now. Kindle is not the first technology or source of information that this was an issue.

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