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As originally published in American Libraries E-content blog:

As originally posted on American Libraries E-content blog http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/open-letter-america-s-publishers

"The following open letter was released by ALA President Maureen Sullivan regarding the refusal of Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin to provide access to their ebooks in USlibraries:

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Discussion News updates

by Marijke Visser (staff) on Wed, Feb 20, 2013 at 12:51 pm

These posts will be a collection of articles pertaining to the work of the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group

Ebook Talks: First Report

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ebook-talks-first-report

 

Ebook Talks: The Details

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ebook-talks-details

 

These posts will be a collection of articles pertaining to the work of the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group

Ebook Talks: First Report

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ebook-talks-first-report

 

Ebook Talks: The Details

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ebook-talks-details

 

ALA calls on Random House to reconsider major ebook price increase

http://www.ala.org/news/pr?id=9560

 

Ebook Talks Continued: ALA Meets with Distrbutors

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ebook-talks-continued-ala-meets-distributors

 

ALA President responds to new report on 'The Rise of E-Reading'

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/news/ala/ala-president-responds-new-report-rise-e-reading

 

Join the National Research Effort on Ebooks and Libraries

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/join-national-research-effort-ebooks-and-libraries

 

OverDrive Ebook Data Gets Crunched

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/overdrive-ebook-data-revealed

 

ALA Board Backs Intensified Ebook Advocacy

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ala-board-backs-intensified-ebook-advocacy

 

Ebooks: Promising New Conversations

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ebooks-promising-new-conversations

 

ALA Annual Opens on Upbeat Note: Penguin to Pilot Library Lending Program

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ala-annual-opens-upbeat-note-penguin-pilot-library-lending-program

 

ALA president responds to new Pew report on ‘Libraries, Patrons and E-books’

http://www.ala.org/news/pr?id=10840

 

Digital Content Working Group Tip Sheet: DRM

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/digital-content-working-group-tip-sheet-drm

 

ALA and PLA partner with OCLC on ebook research project

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ala-and-pla-partner-oclc-ebook-research-project

 

ALA releases "Ebook Business Models for Public Libraries"

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ala-releases-ebook-business-models-public-libraries

 

ALA decries Hachette's 220 percent library e-book price increase

http://www.ala.org/news/pr?id=11450

 

An Open Letter to America's Publishers

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/open-letter-america-s-publishers

 

ALA meets with Assciation of American Publishers on e-books

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/inside-scoop/ala-meets-association-american-publishers-e-books

 

Libraries and Publishers Strengthening the E-Reading Ecosystem

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/libraries-and-publishers-strengthening-e-reading-ecosystem

 

ALA Responds to AAP Challenges on Ebooks....Before They are Even Issued

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/ala-responds-aap-challenges-ebooks-they-are-even-issued

 

Focus on the Future

http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/focus-future-two-days-publisher-meetings-new-york-city

 

On the Road for Ebooks: How ALA Advocated This Fall

http://www.americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/road-ebooks-how-ala-advocated-fall

 

A Message to All ALA Members from ALA President Maurenn Sullivan

http://www.americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/message-all-ala-members-ala-president-maureen-sullivan

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Discussion Open Letter to America's Publishers

by Marijke Visser (staff) on Mon, Sep 24, 2012 at 12:05 pm

As originally posted on American Libraries E-content blog http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/open-letter-america-s-publishers

"The following open letter was released by ALA President Maureen Sullivan regarding the refusal of Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin to provide access to their ebooks in USlibraries:

As originally posted on American Libraries E-content blog http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/open-letter-america-s-publishers

"The following open letter was released by ALA President Maureen Sullivan regarding the refusal of Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin to provide access to their ebooks in USlibraries:

It’s a rare thing in a free market when a customer is refused the ability to buy a company’s product and is told its money is “no good here.” Surprisingly, after centuries of enthusiastically supporting publishers’ products, libraries find themselves in just that position with purchasing ebooks from three of the largest publishers in the world. Simon & Schuster, Macmillan, and Penguin have been denying access to their ebooks for our nation’s 112,000 libraries and roughly 169 million public library users.

Let’s be clear on what this means: If our libraries’ digital bookshelves mirrored the New York Times fiction bestseller list, we would be missing half of our collection any given week due to these publishers’ policies. The popular Bared to You and The Glass Castle are not available in libraries because libraries cannot purchase them at any price. Today’s teens also will not find the digital copy of Judy Blume’s seminal Forever, nor today’s blockbuster Hunger Games series.

Not all publishers are following the path of these three publishers. In fact, hundreds of publishers of ebooks have embraced the opportunity to create new sales and reach readers through our nation’s libraries. One recent innovation allows library patrons to immediately purchase an ebook if the library doesn’t have a copy or if there is a wait list they would like to avoid. This offers a win-win relationship for both publishers and library users since recent research from the Pew Internet Project tells us that library users are more than twice as likely to have bought their most recent book as to have borrowed it from a library.

Libraries around the country are developing mobile applications and online discovery systems that make it easier to explore books and authors on the go. Seventy-six percent of public libraries now offer ebooks—double the number from only five years ago—and 39 percent of libraries have purchased and circulate e-readers. Public libraries alone spend more than $1.3 billion annually on their collections of print, audio, video, and electronic materials. They are investing not only in access to content and devices, but also in teaching the skills needed to navigate and utilize digital content successfully.

Librarians understand that publishing is not just another industry. It has special and important significance to society. Libraries complement and, in fact, actively support this industry by supporting literacy and seeking to spread an infectious and lifelong love of reading and learning. Library lending encourages patrons to experiment by sampling new authors, topics, and genres. This experimentation stimulates the market for books, with the library serving as a de facto discovery, promotion, and awareness service for authors and publishers.

Publishers, libraries, and other entities have worked together for centuries to sustain a healthy reading ecosystem—celebrating our society’s access to the complete marketplace of ideas. Given the obvious value of libraries to publishers, it simply does not add up that any publisher would continue to lock out libraries. It doesn’t add up for me, it doesn’t add up for ALA’s 60,000 members, and it definitely doesn’t add up for the millions of people who use our libraries every month.

America’s libraries have always served as the “people’s university” by providing access to reading materials and educational opportunity for the millions who want to read and learn but cannot afford to buy the books they need. Librarians have a particular concern for vulnerable populations that may not have any other access to books and electronic content, including individuals and families who are homebound or low-income. To deny these library users access to ebooks that are available to others—and which libraries are eager to purchase on their behalf—is discriminatory.

We have met and talked sincerely with many of these publishers. We have sought common ground by exploring new business models and library lending practices. But these conversations only matter if they are followed by action: Simon & Schuster must sell to libraries. Macmillan must implement its proposed pilot. Penguin must accelerate and expand its pilots beyond two urban New York libraries.

We librarians cannot stand by and do nothing while some publishers deepen the digital divide. We cannot wait passively while some publishers deny access to our cultural record. We must speak out on behalf of today’s—and tomorrow’s—readers. The library community demands meaningful change and creative solutions that serve libraries and our readers who rightfully expect the same access to ebooks as they have to printed books.

So, which side will you be on? Will you join us in a future of liberating literature for all? Libraries stand with readers, thinkers, writers, dreamers, and inventors. Books and knowledge—in all their forms—are essential. Access to them must not be denied."

 

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Discussion DWCG Library Education group creates Tip Sheets

by Marijke Visser (staff) on Mon, Jul 23, 2012 at 11:31 am

The Digital Content and Libraries Working Group (DCWG) of the American Library Association (ALA) is developing a series of informational Tip Sheets for the library community.  We are pleased to share with you Tip Sheet #1 on digital rights management. 

The Digital Content and Libraries Working Group (DCWG) of the American Library Association (ALA) is developing a series of informational Tip Sheets for the library community.  We are pleased to share with you Tip Sheet #1 on digital rights management. 

DCWG Tip Sheets will provide librarians with clear definitions; examples of how digital content and digital formats impact library services; and resources for further information on the numerous and often complicated issues in providing digital resources to their patrons and students.  Please share the Tip Sheets widely with colleagues and through your professional networks.  Ataached is a cover letter you may use to accompany the Tip Sheet if you do share it with colleagues.

Because the DCWG is concerned with covering issues that are important to librarians who provide direct services, meet with Friends of the Library groups, report to library Boards or school Boards, or field questions from state or local press, the Library Education subgroup is actively seeking input and feedback from the library community.  What issues are important to you and what information do you need to help you answer tough questions?  We invite you to engage with the DCWG via ALA’s American Libraries’ E-content blog, ALA’s Facebook page, and using the #dcwgtips Twitter hash tag.  We want our Tip Sheets to support the work you do and provide you with some of the resources you need.

Thank you,

Christopher Harris

Chair, Library Education Subgroup,

ALA’s Digital Content and Libraries Working Group

 

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Discussion Conference call minutes from the Business Models subgroup of DCWG Nov 5, 2015

by Carrie Russell (staff) on Fri, Nov 6, 2015 at 12:57 pm

We discussed Midwinter program planning.

Discussion Confrence call minutes from the Business Models subgroup of DCWG October 8 2015

by Carrie Russell (staff) on Fri, Oct 9, 2015 at 02:57 pm

Latest discussion on ebooks and business models

Midwinter program planning

 

Discussion A Message to All ALA Members from ALA President Maureen Sullivan

by Marijke Visser (staff) on Wed, Feb 20, 2013 at 12:30 pm

As originally published in American Libraries E-content blog:

As originally published in American Libraries E-content blog:

As we mark the halfway point of the 2011–2015 ALA Strategic Plan, the American Library Association (ALA) has made significant strides towards its goal to provide leadership in the transformation of libraries and library services in an increasingly digital information environment. I am proud to be part of this important work withALA Immediate Past President Molly Raphael and President-elect Barbara Stripling. At the highest levels and across the organization, ALA has mobilized around ebooks and larger digital content issues affecting libraries of all types. A great deal of work was accomplished earlier this year under Molly’s leadership and with the very good work accomplished by the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group (DCWG) that she appointed. This continues to be a priority for the Association.

read more http://americanlibrariesmagazine.org/e-content/message-all-ala-members-ala-president-maureen-sullivan


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Discussion Digital Content and Libraries Working Group Roster

by Marijke Visser (staff) on Wed, Feb 20, 2013 at 12:24 pm

Discussion fyi report from OECD: E-books: Developments and Policy Considerations

by Catherine Michael on Fri, Nov 2, 2012 at 08:07 am

E-books: Developments and Policy Considerations

http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/science-and-technology/e-books-developments-and-policy-considerations_5k912zxg5svh-en

Just got an alert about this report and thought you might be interested. Sincerely, Cathy

Discussion Backgrounder on "Libraries, Patrons, and E-books"

by Marijke Visser (staff) on Fri, Aug 31, 2012 at 02:04 pm

As part of the ALA Office for Information Technology Policy’s work with the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group, several member leaders have requested we develop and distribute communications resources that will support local libraries around digital content issues.

As part of the ALA Office for Information Technology Policy’s work with the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group, several member leaders have requested we develop and distribute communications resources that will support local libraries around digital content issues.

In July OITP released the first of these documents, a backgrounder (pdf) that shares some highlights from the newest Pew Research Center report on“Libraries, Patrons, and E-books,” along with some possible messaging and local angles for leveraging this new research with local media and decision makers.

Among the report’s key findings referenced in the backgrounder:

  • 12% of e-book readers have borrowed an e-book from their library
  • 62% of people don’t know they can borrow e-books from their library
  • 69% of people report the library is important to them and their family
  • Many people would like to learn more about borrowing e-books
  • E-book borrowers appreciate the selection of e-books at their local library, but they often encounter difficulty borrowing

(The paper is also attached below).

 

 

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Discussion New report fyi: E-Books in Libraries: A Briefing Document Developed in Preparation for a Workshop on E-Lending in Libraries

by Catherine Michael on Mon, Jul 30, 2012 at 02:02 pm

O'Brien, David, Gasser, Urs and Palfrey, John G., E-Books in Libraries: A Briefing Document Developed in Preparation for a Workshop on E-Lending in Libraries (July 1, 2012). Berkman Center Research Publication No. 2012-15. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2111396

I recieved notice of this report from Rebecca Tabasky of the Berkman Center: http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/  She included the following "From the executive summary":

O'Brien, David, Gasser, Urs and Palfrey, John G., E-Books in Libraries: A Briefing Document Developed in Preparation for a Workshop on E-Lending in Libraries (July 1, 2012). Berkman Center Research Publication No. 2012-15. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2111396

I recieved notice of this report from Rebecca Tabasky of the Berkman Center: http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/  She included the following "From the executive summary":

This briefing document was developed with helpful inputs from industry stakeholders and other practitioners in preparation for the “E-Books in Libraries” workshop, hosted on February 24, 2012, by the Berkman Center for Internet & Society with the generous support of the Charles H. Revson Foundation. 

The “E-Books in Libraries” workshop was convened as part of a broader effort to explore current issues associated with digital publishing business models and access to digitally-published materials in libraries. Workshop attendees, including representatives from leading publishers, libraries, academia, and other industry experts, were invited to identify key challenges, share experiences, and prioritize areas for action. This document, which contains some updates reflecting new developments following the February workshop (up to June 2012), is intended to build on and continue that discussion with a broader audience, and encourage the development of next steps and concrete solutions. 

Beginning with a brief overview of the history and the current state of the e-book publishing market, the document traces the structure of the licensing practices and business models used by distributors to make e-books available in libraries, and identifies select challenges facing libraries and publishers. Where possible, we have made an effort to incorporate stakeholder perspectives and real-world examples to connect analysis to the actual questions, issues, and challenges that arise in practice. The document concludes with a number of informative resources – including news articles, whitepapers, stakeholder and trade association reports, and other online sources – that might inform future conversations, investigations, pilot projects, and best practices in this space. 

The topics presented in this briefing come at an important moment for the publishing industry, and in particular the e-book market, both of which have been rapidly evolving over the last several years. These changes are, in turn, affecting the models used by publishers’ horizontal and vertical business partners, such as libraries and distributors. While we have endeavored to provide accurate information within this document, the dynamic flux of the industry can make it difficult to accurately capture a comprehensive snapshot of its current state. For instance, during the course of our initial research we found that some information published as recently as September 2011 had already become outdated; other salient information is not made publicly available for competitive reasons. Please note that we consider this to be a working document, which we hope to develop further as information changes and the issues evolve.

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Pages

Supporting the “Transformation” of libraries is a priority of the Association’s 2015 Strategic Plan, and the rapid shift from print to digital content is one of the more dramatic developments now transforming libraries of all types.

New digital forms of information offer rich and extraordinary opportunities for libraries to expand community access to information and to revolutionize in positive ways the relationship between libraries and users. At the same time, these new forms of digital content pose new challenges.

As libraries struggle to meet the challenges of providing digital content in an environment characterized by significant uncertainty and changing on a daily basis, there is a need for an Association-wide group of experts, broadly representative of the many constituencies within the library community, that can proactively address these digital content opportunities and issues at the highest level and from both a policy and practical perspective.

To this end, the ALA Working Group on Libraries and Digital Content is charged to:

  • Advise the Association regarding opportunities and issues related to libraries and digital content and the provision of equitable access to digital content for all.
  • Explore, analyze and share information on various options for  expanding access to digital content for libraries and  the public  and for overcoming legal, technological, policy and economic barriers to equitable access
  • Suggest information and training that would be of use to librarians so that they can make informed choices, serve as advocates for digital access, and design and support digital services.
  • Advise the Association on efforts to increase public awareness and understanding of issues related to access to digital content and the challenges to/role of libraries in providing equitable access to digital resources.
  • Assist in the identification of strategies to influence decision makers—whether government officials, publishers, other information service providers, interest groups, and others—to effect changes that would assist libraries in better serving their communities.
  • Address specific issues such as Business Models, Accessibility, Privacy, Education for the Library Community, Public Outreach and Publisher/Service Provider Relations through working subcommittees, bringing in other experts and advisors as appropriate.
  • Serve as formal liaisons to various ALA and ALA affiliate groups (examples would include the divisions, round tables, ethnic affiliates, and ALA Accessibility Assembly).
  • As appropriate, reach out to other organizations and experts in other fields in order to better understand the broad technological, social and economic environments and trends and their potential impact on libraries

 

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