Libraries Pay More

Did you know that libraries pay a huge amount more for audiobooks and eBooks than for a physical copy of the book? And did you also know that many audiobooks aren’t even available to libraries…even when they are bestsellers? This is an ongoing issue that libraries are struggling to overcome, especially since there is a growing demand for digital services such as this.

Libraries are crucial to exposing people to new authors, for promoting books, and for keeping publishers above water. But it’s difficult to get this idea across to the big publishers, who feel that their authors are being underpaid, or at least, undervalued.

When we purchase books for libraries, we might purchase several copies, depending on the demand for the book and the number of branches. However, each book will be read by multiple people, and publishers feel like this is “cheating” both them and the authors out of residuals. The same is true for audiobooks and ebooks, but on a much more dire scale. A physical book will most likely only last about 24 reads before it becomes worn and needs to be replaced. But a digital copy of a book can be used over and over without decay. It sounds like the argument for paying more is good.

But our digital copies are limited to about the same number of reads through the systems that our libraries use, such as Libby (formerly OverDrive), and Hoopla. Once they reach the checkout limit, another copy must be purchased, whether the digital copy is in fine form or not.

So why are publishers charging twice or even three times as much for a digital copy? Libraries can’t afford to purchase more, simply because we could buy other books…newer books, or different versions of those books. And if the bestsellers aren’t even available to libraries, then we’re losing out again.

Libraries have started a movement using the hashtag #eContentForLibraries to help spread the word. You can read all about the movement here.

Go to the page and read it. If you feel strongly that libraries are being treated unfairly, share the information, and be sure to use the hashtag above. Or contact the publishers directly, doing the same. If enough voices are heard on this issue, maybe libraries will be able to offer patrons more. We’d love to, but we can’t do this alone.

#eContentForLibraries

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eReader, Tablet, Phone, Computer? Help!

It’s that time again…time to answer all those burning questions about eReaders. It seems like every year, we go through a cycle of time where people turn up with new devices and need help downloading books. Maybe it’s the summer, when people are traveling and need the ability to take multiple books with them without the extra weight. Or maybe it’s the holidays, when well-meaning family or friends purchase those devices as gifts, and then go happily back to their lives, leaving their recipient with millions of questions on how to use the thing. Whatever the reason, we have a few suggestions.

While we can’t recommend specific devices, we can steer you toward the easiest options for YOU.

I want to be able to read an eBook on a device outside in the bright sunshine.

Then an eReader with some sort of real paper technology is what you’re looking for. Tablets aren’t really capable, and some eReaders just don’t use the technology. But if you’re only interested in being able to read on the beach, do your research and find a device that mimics paper while lighting it enough that you can read while outside. They’re out there, but not on all devices.

I want to listen to audibooks while I’m at the gym.

You have several options. The easiest one is to download an app onto your cell phone or tablet and plug in the earphones. We have some great free apps for downloading audiobooks—Libby (formerly OverDrive), and Hoopla are both available in your app stores, require minimal setup, and you can be listening in minutes!

You can also download audiobooks to your computer, and transfer them to some eReaders that have MP3 capabilities. This option is rather involved (a specific, kind of antiquated program to help you transfer the items, a computer, and your eReader). It’s a little tricky. If you’re not into tricky, try another option. See above.

I want to read eBooks and listen to audiobooks on something other than my computer. And, oh, I’m over 40 and suddenly can’t read any fonts smaller than 14 point.

Don’t go the cell phone route. Even when you can pinch open a page to make it larger, you’ll only have a few words on your screen, and that can be annoying. You might be able to swing an eReader, which will help you make the font larger, but it’s also a bit tricky to download books (see above). What you need is a tablet!

You can do all of these things on a tablet, and you don’t need to purchase an expensive one to do it. As long as your tablet can download apps, you’re good to go. While the app won’t necessarily let you make the font larger, you’ll have plenty of screen to open the books on without sacrificing space. Try to aim for the largest screen you can, if you’re going to do eBooks specifically. But if you’re going for audibooks, you can size down for prize and go for the best deal. It’ll work great!

I want to be able to cast my audiobooks using Alexa or Google Home, or listen to them in the car on bluetooth.

For both of these, you’ll need special devices. To listen to audibooks using your Amazon Echo (Alexa) or Google Home, you need a subscription to Audible.ca. Libby and Hoopla books don’t work quite yet, although Hoopla might have something coming in the future.

To listen to audibooks in your car, you have to have Bluetooth installed in your car, and set the bluetooth to “on” on your phone. Then, you should be able to play your audiobooks through your car speakers just fine.

We love audiobooks and eBooks through both of our wonderful programs, but you do need to think about what you want your device to do before purchasing something to make sure you get the most out of it!

And ALL of your downloads from Libby and Hoopla count toward our circulation, so just because you might not be coming to the library as often for physical books doesn’t mean you aren’t moving our circulation along. Keep reading and keep listening! We love our patrons!

New Device? Use OverDrive!

warm-up-with-an-audiobookDid you know that your new phone or tablet can be used for reading? Of course! Download the OverDrive app, and you’re on your way to reading audiobooks and ebooks without leaving the house. All you need is your library card and PIN.

Pop over to our library website and scroll to the bottom of the page. Click on the OverDrive link and follow the instructions for downloading and app and signing in. It’s easy, and you’ll be downloading eBooks and audiobooks in minutes.

If you have trouble, drop by the library to get your PIN, register with our tech-spert Caroline for some one-on-one training, or ask one of the staff to get your started. There are thousands of eBooks and audiobooks on OverDrive for the whole family. And it’s FREE with your library card. Isn’t that the best present of all?

Electronic Resources at the Library

While many of you are already thinking summer, we’d like to remind you about some of the great eResources we have available on our library website to help with homework, reading and more. There is more here than just an online encyclopedia—how about book suggestions, read-alongs, and more!

To access any of these great eResources, all you need to do is visit our website at:

http://carletonplacelibrary.ca

eResourcesDid you notice how many of these offer French options? And everything is available 24/7! All you need is your library card. Click on one of the links above, and get searching.

Audiobooks and more

Spring into eBooks 2_404x404Audiobooks and eBooks are always on our minds at the library. You can access the free digital collection from our OverDrive partnership simply by having a library card and PIN number. If you have a tablet, phone, eReader, or computer, there are plenty of ways to download a book and either listen, or read. It’s easy, and you’ll get addicted to it, we promise!

If you use a device that has apps, download the OverDrive app from Google Play, or the App Store, install it and sign up, and all you’ll need now is your library card and PIN.  All of the great books you take out will download right into your app, where you can read offline, or use a browser to access your checkouts. Yes, you can do this from anywhere in the world, at any time–day or night.

Audiobooks are great for people who work out, for those with long commutes, and for people who have a busy lifestyle. Listen on the go and never miss out on that great new book everyone is talking about. Place a hold if it isn’t available right away, and the folks at OverDrive will email you when it becomes available for you. Easy, right?

If you prefer to read instead of listen, eBooks are a favourite of many of our patrons. You can have dozens of books on your device at once, travel and not have to worry about overdue books, and enjoy bonus features to reading, such as virtual bookmarks, syncing to more than one device in the middle of reading, a dictionary, and much more. And it only takes a few seconds to download an eBook. Have you tried it yet?

If you have an older eReader, don’t worry, most of the devices are still supported. You might need to use your computer to facilitate the download, but you can still read with ease on your eReader and not have to worry about lugging around heavy books. Some of the eReaders even come with special features that allow you to read at night, or take away the harmful effects of reading an electronic device before trying to sleep.

If you want to know more about eBooks and Audiobooks on OverDrive, drop by the library for a quick demo, or take home some information to get started. You’ll be reading up a storm before you know it! (Sorry about the storm reference….we’re tired of them, too!)