An introduction to the issues surrounding libraries and eBooks. In the past 2 years, libraries have seen a sharp growth in e-book borrowing. That trend is transforming the relationship between libraries and publishers.
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• Background – „Friction‟
• Advantages and disadvantages
• Overview of different purchase models
• PDA, STL, SUSL, etc
• Dealing with
• The Market
www.epubdirect.comPublishers & Libraries
PUBLISHERS AND LIBRARIES: ‘FRICTION’
www.epubdirect.comThe Big 6 & Libraries
As eBook borrowing from libraries skyrockets, publishers fear that borrowing will cut
into paid sales of print and digital materials.
Big-six publishers met with the American Library Association in Feb 2012
Borrowing a print book from a library involves a nontrivial amount of personal work
that often involves two trips-one to pick up the book and one to return it. The online
availability of e-books alters this friction calculation, and publishers are concerned
that the ready download-ability of library ebooks could have an adverse effect on
Digital Content & Libraries Working Group (DCWG)
PUBLISHERS AND LIBRARIES: ‘FRICTION’
Library Bestseller NYT Best Sellers
Friction in Lending Arrangements
Through licensing agreements, publishers and distributors often impose contractual
restrictions on libraries and distributors. This “friction” plays a key role in differentiating
business models and delineating market segments (e.g., purchasers of books vs.
public library patrons).
Examples of friction in a contractual agreement include limits on:
• ownership (e.g., whether an eBook file is owned, licensed, or subscribed to)
• time (e.g., windows on distribution, delays between patron loan request and
download, limitations on the permissible period for which a library can loan an eBook to
• age of eBook (e.g., distribution release windows based upon time from publication)
• variable price points (e.g., one-time fee, or fees based on use/access)
• place (e.g., the location where a patron can access/download an eBook – over the
Internet or only on library premises)
• scarcity of copies (e.g., a cap on the number of copies accessible per user, per library,
CHARACTERISTICS OF BUSINESS MODELS
To enable library and retail distribution channels for eBooks to coexist, most
business models currently offered to libraries include constraints on how eBooks
can be used.
Here are 16 factors to consider when discussing eBook platforms:
1. One user/one book model
2. Subscription option
3. STL model
4. PDA model
5. Perpetual access
6. Free viewing period (for PDA)
7. Interlibrary loan
8. Invoicing intervals (monthly, quarterly, yearly)
9. DRM policies
11.Limited number of loans
BUSINESS MODELS: ADVANTAGES & DISADVANTAGES
Because of the fundamental shift facing trade publishing, including the entry of
retail companies that currently dominate the eBook market, publishers and
authors have much to gain from enabling libraries to distribute eBooks
• Enhanced Discovery: Library users are also heavy book buyers, and
publishers value the role libraries play in connecting readers with authors.
• Sales Channel: Libraries can generate additional sales for the publisher.
Often, in new territories that print doesn‟t reach.
• Cannibalization: Publishers fear that eBooks that are available in a public
library at no extra cost to patrons will compete directly with e-books sold
• Piracy: !
Patron-driven acquisition (PDA)
One of the most talked-about models for acquiring eBooks in academic libraries.
The PDA model is fairly straightforward: ebook purchases are triggered based on
traffic and patron interest in particular titles. This business model guarantees that
only the content that gets used gets purchased. Although it is still not common,
some vendors have begun experimenting with a PDA option for public library
Short-term loans (STL)
STLs are similar to the PDA model in that patron demand ultimately drives how the
library spends its budget. The key difference is that STLs are rental agreements, not
contracts for ongoing access. STL is a good solution for librarians looking to obtain
access to content they wouldn‟t otherwise be able to afford.
Single User/Single License & Multi User/Multi License. Under this model, libraries
may pick and choose titles that they may archive in perpetuity. Loans are limited to
one user at a time for each eBook licence purchased. This often results in waiting
lists for popular titles. Pricing per title is at publisher list price
Limited Number of Loans
The library must repurchase the same title after a defined number of loans. This
model is essential rental.
Some publishers are setting different library RRP‟s to their trade RRP‟s, with some
titles well above the print RRP and some other offered at a discount. Arose as a
result of „terms of sale‟ debate.
Through license agreements, libraries can share titles among more than one
institution. Similar to a physical library allowing loans or circulation to other branches
Publishers sometimes delay sales of eBooks to libraries for a period after the title
is released for public sale. This embargo or window may last from a few weeks to
several months of more.
Access if offered as part of a collection as a renewable term subscription (annual),
for concurrent use by end users.
OverDrive is a full-service digital distributor of eBooks,
audiobooks, music and video worldwide. They deliver
eBook services for libraries, schools and retailers, on
a global scale. OverDrive hosts more than 1 million
premium digital titles from more than 2,000 publishers,
including Random House, HarperCollins, Harlequin,
and Bloomsbury. Their digital distribution services are
utilized by more than 22,000 libraries, schools, and
EPUBs and PDFs
• One Title/One User (SUSL): For each eBook that is purchased, the distribution outlet is
permitted to sell or lend that same number of units to end users at the same time (i.e. if a
library purchases 2 copies, they can lend out 2 copies at a time).
• Subscription (Max Access): Access if offered as part of a collection as a renewable term
subscription (annual), for concurrent use by end users. 25, 50, 75, 100.
US based ebrary is a leading distributor of ebooks to
academic, professional, corporate and public libraries across
the world. With over 70,000 eBooks, they work with over 600
international publishers, serving over 10,000 libraries
worldwide. Academic and higher education are currently their
ebrary has multiple business model options:
1. Perpetual Access (most popular and fastest growing): single user or multiuser
• Single User Perpetual = 100% of RRP
• Multi-User Access Perpetual (up to 3 users at one time) = 125% of RRP
2. Licensed access: Collections, annual renewal e.g. Academic Complete, Internal embargo of
one year for frontlist books (frontlist titles go into the perpetual model). The licensed access
collections represent a way to extend the "long tail" of your books' sales life.
• Pricing based on subscription. Library subscription access/ usage. Library subscription value is
based on size and varies from library to library.
3. Corporate rental: Corporate organizations can purchase time-limited access to books for their
corporate libraries at prorated prices.
• Price based on RRP
4. Short-term loan: Library patrons can purchase time-limited access to specific titles. After 3
short term loan purchases, a perpetual access purchase is automatically triggered. Short terms
loans are limited to single user only terms, and are capped at 3 occurrences per library.
• Price based on RRP
5. Patron Driven Acquisition: Libraries purchase books based on patron usage -- if certain usage
thresholds are met (access 10 pages, viewed for 10 consecutive minutes, any single
copy/paste/print performed) a perpetual access purchase is automatically triggered for the
library. This is a very popular model with libraries because it allows them to ensure that the
content they're purchasing is actually being used.
• Pricing based on subscription. Library subscription access / usage. Library subscription value is
based on size and is undisclosed
EBL, www.eblib.com, provides ebooks to academic and research,
government and corporate libraries. Formerly part of eBooks.com until
acquired by Proquest in 2012, EBL focuses on the specific needs of
academic and research-based libraries, and as a result has deep
penetration amongst academic and research institutions. Widely used by
Academic publishers like Penguin DK, Wiley and Palgrave Macmillan.
• 5 minutes, copy/print/interaction etc, triggers auto-purchase
• Non-Linear lending 325 uses
• Non-Linear restricted (3 loans per day/concurrent users)
• Non-Linear unrestricted (no limit on users)
• Max 1 chapter, 1 user at a time
4. Short-Term Lending
• Initiated by the library for one patron, for a percentage of the list price for non owned books.
• Autopurchases occur when libraries elect settings that allow books to be automatically purchased
when borrowed X times as a Short Term Loan.
EBSCO is one of the biggest global academic library suppliers,
offering more than 380,000 eBooks and audiobooks from over
2,200 publishers. It services over 113,000 libraries in total,
32,000 libraries for eBooks, globally. ePub, PDF
EBSCO eBooks are offered through multiple distribution models:
1. Single User Model
2. Multi-user Models
• <3 users = 1.25x
• >3 users = 1.5X
3. Subscription Model
• Part of a collection, renewable term subscription (annual),
4. Patron Driven Acquisition Model (PDA)
• 10 minutes/pages
5. Lease Model
• 1 day = 15% of DLP
• 28 days = 30% of DLP
6. Concurrent Access Model: 365 uses per year
Chegg is a leading US academic hub that
specializes in online textbook rentals (both in
physical and digital formats), homework help and
scholarships. Chegg is used by over 5 million
students on over 7,000 campuses across the US.
1. Subscription model.
• 43% of the Digital List Price for a 90-day subscription
• 57% of the Digital List Price for a 125-day subscription
• 71% of the Digital List Price for a 180-day subscription
• 100% of the Digital List Price for a one-time purchase
1. Single User – Single License In the library market they trade through their 3 sister companies:
• Askews & Holts Library Services
eBook lending solutions for Public Libraries, Foundation through Primary, Secondary, Further
Education, Colleagues, Universities and Academic & Specialist Libraries. Approx. 52 Public Library
Authorities and 1,000 Edu Libraries in the UK.
• Browns Books for Students
VLeBooks www.vlebooks.com , offers a new way for students to access Publishers eBook
catalogue. This unique online platform lets students read via a computer or mobile device without
additional software, download to read offline or on an eReader.
Navigator.net www.bbfsnavigator.net is already the preferred method of ordering over 16,000
librarians and teachers. Integrated ordering of eBooks together with physical books provides a single
source for all reading material for the library and classroom.
Gardners Books is the largest book wholesaler in the
United Kingdom. They have a stock catalogue of over
850,000 titles from over 4,000 publishers.
3M Cloud Library has about 40
publishers and more than 100,000 titles.
They have secured numerous pilot
projects for Penguin, Hachette and S&S.
Baker & Taylor huge traditional print book
distributor, with a large digital arm and with a
focus on 2 markets, libraries and retail. Titles
go into their Access 360 platform where
libraries access a time-limited, DRM-protected
file from the Baker & Taylor servers. SUSL.
Overdrive & China: At the Beijing Book Fair Overdrive announced steps
towards making Overdrive's catalogue of digital content available in China to
libraries and retailers. There is no timeline in which the digital ecosystem will
be widely available. Sources within the company have speculated that
English Schools will be the first ones to make the eBooks available
EBSCO Introduces eBook Business Collection: EBSCO have just
announced a new assortment of ebooks for academic libraries. The collection
is designed to help business school students conduct their research and work
on special projects by aggregating top business titles in one unlimited-access
subscription collection. Topics in the more than 9,400-ebook grouping include
marketing, finance, supply chain management, and entrepreneurship.
Students can also find sources on career growth, personal development,
communication, and networking. A flat fee will be charged for access to the
collection, and libraries will be able to access new titles for free as they are
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Broad Revenue Base
LIBRARIES GENERATING SIGNIFICANT SALES