Harper Collins vs. Libraries – battling for the future of lending digital content

There are other where blogs you can read more about this. The upshot is that OverDrive sent out a “State of OverDrive” letter which had some concerning news in it. The Librarian in Black outlines the primary issues. The big deal is that one publisher, Harper Collins, wants to dramatically change its ebook terms such that once you “buy” an ebook to be distributed via overdrive, it can circulate 26 times and then no more. Keep in mind that OverDrive is acceding to these requests, so I think we rightfully have a bone to pick with them as well. BoingBoing gives you some information on why this sort of DRM situation is bad for libraries, bad for people.

There are some other things in the OverDrive note including them starting to be hardasses with libraries about who is in their geographical region, to make sure libraries aren’t, I guess, defrauding OverDrive and giving cards to any old person so that they can rip OverDrive off? The mind boggles. I call this meddling. Bobbi Newman has a good and updated summary of who is saying what about this and this Library Journal article about it is replete with comments.

Now is really the time for us to step up and use our excellent collective buying power to say that this sort of thing is not at all okay. I am sorry if OverDrive is realizing that their revenue model isn’t as terrific as they maybe thought it would be, but this is overstepping what a decent vendor/library model should look like. I just get this weird feeling that in these tough economic times, OverDrive and book publishers, forgetting that libraries are some of their best and most enduring customers, have decided to see how they can get more money for fewer services. At the same time, they’re treating libraries as if we’re the ones responsible for publishers’ revenue problems. Shame on both Harper Collins for being tough guys and OverDrive for giving in to these demands.

Publishers and vendors: we will work with you to find ways to lend digital content. You need to not treat libraries as if they’re contributing to your demise.

some library love links from astronauts and actors and poets and fans

Sometimes it’s a good thin to remember that libraries have big imacts on people who do big things. The ripple effect is hard to quantify, but it’s a good thing to remember. From my inbox

  • Ronald McNair was one of the astronuauts killed in the Challenger explosion 25 years ago. There was a piece on NPR about his brother reminiscing about how McNair was adamant about using his public library in South Carolina despite the fact that it was supposedly for “whites only”
  • Wil Wheaton, actor and blogger shared a short bit he wrote for a literacy project explaining why he thinks librarians are awesome.
  • In the comments of that post is a link to this poem published in Library Journal: Why I Am In Love With Librarians.
  • Another booster site that I forgot to mention earlier is the Library History Buff site. Larry Nix is a retired librarian and library history enthusiast. I’ve linked to his library history page many times over the years, but I’m not sure if I’ve linked to his blog. He recently did a post wrapping up the work he did in 2010 and pointing to the page he created for it. Good stuff, worth reading.

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I made the cover of Library Journal for no reason whatsoever

Hiya. I’m preparing for a talk on Social Software that I’m giving in Utica, New York next Friday. I’ve been travelling significantly less and staying home writing much more. It’s been going well. I noticed last night on facebook [thanks Trevor] that I appear to be cartoonified and on the cover of this month’s Library Journal. Of course this is the post-Reed Business LJ, so I can’t find the cover on their new website and Trevor confirms there’s no actual mention of him or me in the actual article, but hey why pick nits? Interested folks can head over to his facebook profile and ID all the other luminaries on the cover including Emily Sheketoff, Nancy Pearl, Toni Morrison, Ginnie Cooper, Jill Nishi, Salman Rushdie, Mario Ascencio, Trevor Dawes, Camila Alire and Keith Michael Fiels floating away holding on to some balloons.

Library Journal on Libraries in Crisis

A friend who is working with the Save LAPL campaign has also been actively paying attention to all of the other libraries in crisis stories that Library Journal [itself newly for sale and purchased] has been writing. Here they are.

LIBRARIES IN CRISIS

Boston:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6719906.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725545.html

Charlotte, NC:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723200.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6724087.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723882.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726630.html

Florida:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723308.html

Houston:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726308.html

Indianapolis:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725481.html

Lexington, KY:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723655.html

Los Angeles:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6727913.html

Massachusetts:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6727650.html

Michigan:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6721718.html

New Mexico:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6720424.html

NYC:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726822.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726822.html

Ohio:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725584.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6727977.html

Portland, ME:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725481.html

San Francisco:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6722800.html

San Jose:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6722394.html

Tennessee:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6722036.html

what’s going on with koha and liblime

“Meanwhile, if there is high ground to be had, I doubt it is currently occupied by LibLime.”

Roy Tennant explains what’s been going on at LibLime and links to a longer post at Library Matters. LibLime’s version of this announcement, on their news feed, is not very encouraging. As someone working with a tiny library and a free version of Koha, I’m particularly disappointed in the libraries that are helping bankroll this and are not pushing for more openness in terms of release dates for code and better communication all around. Meanwhile Nicole Engard whose work I respect a lot has taken a job at Bywater Solutions. They are lucky to have her.

can you loan out a kindle?

Library Journal announced last week that Brigham Young University had received a verbal okay from Amazon to start lending Kindles in their library. This week it appears that they’ve suspended the program until they can get written permission. While I totally understand the concerns on both sides here, I’d really like it if libraries sometimes erred on the side of continuing to do whatever it was that they were doing, in good faith, and let the vendors let them know if they’re not doing something correctly. It’s a little weird to me that Amazon has invested all this time and money into an ebook reader and has no policy about what the legal/copyright concerns are with using it in a library. Can someone please force this issue?

update: There is an interesting story making the blog rounds about just how much of the Kindle’s policies and DRM weirdnesses remain mysterious, even to the people who work at Amazon.

Library Journal’s Movers and Shakers

Library Journal has once again made the Movers and Shakers list look nice but not be super useful in the online world. I like seeing everyone’s photos. I’d prefer to get a copy/pasteable list of names. Here’s everyone [taken from the total list and grepped to only include this year's winners] and links to their LJ profile. If someone would like to add personal site URLs to this, please feel free to copy/paste/repurpose. Whoops, looks like Bobbi Newman had already done it, yay!

Maureen Ambrosino
Kenning Arlitsch
Barry Bailey
Brian Bannon
Rebecca M. Blakeley
Erik Boekesteijn
Chad Boeninger
Jill Bourne
J. Drusilla Carter
Natalie Caruso
Susan Conlon
Karen Coombs
Kim Duckett
Carlene Engstrom
Ann Dutton Ewbank
Lia Friedman
Dean Giustini
Toby Greenwalt
Jason Griffey
Carey Gross
Lisa Harris
William Harmer
Sarah Houghton-Jan
Ingrid Kalchthaler
Nancy J. Keane
Karen Kleckner Keefe
Casey Long
Laverne Mann
Daniel Marcou
Jamie Markus
Matt L. Moran
Joe Murphy
Rebecca Near
Kristi L. Palmer
Dave Pattern
Ken Pienkos
Michael Porter
Lauren Pressley
Lori Reed
Melissa L. Rethlefsen
Jenica P. Rogers-Urbanek
Lisa G. Rosenblum
Dorothea Salo
Allison Santos
Julie Scordato
Pam Sessoms
Koren Stembridge
Jaap Van De Geer
Geert Van Den Boogaard
Rachel Walden
Carlie Webber

Join the Shovers and Makers!

Shovers and Makers 2009: I’m a winner! (So are you.) shoversandmakers.net

I added myself. Go add yourself. Read more, if you want, but it’s pretty self evident. [thanks dan]

linkdump for october ’08

Again, here are a set of things that maybe don’t need their own post but are worth letting people know about.

I’ll be doing another post on blogs added to my feed reader lately. I had organized and culled and plumped up my feed reading list a few months back [down time on an airplane] and was all pleased but then the hurricane that was my HD crash set me back to the beginning. I’ve been reading some neat stuff that I’ll be sharing with you.

know any Movers & Shakers?

Library Journal’s Movers & Shakers nominations are open from now until November 10th. Here’s the list of people who have already been honored. Does anyone remember if someone made a hyperlinked list of these names? I seem to recall one but am having trouble finding it.
update: Thanks Amy, it’s Connie Crosby who made the excellent hyperlinked Movers & Shakers list.