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Harris: What Kinds of Books Does Your K12 Library Need?


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Presentation for AASL at American Library Association National Conference, New Orleans, June 27, 2011

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Harris: What Kinds of Books Does Your K12 Library Need?

  1. 1. What Kinds of Books Does Your K-12 School Library Need?<br />Frances Jacobson Harris<br />Librarian, University Laboratory High School<br />Urbana, IL<br /><br />
  2. 2. How will these discussions look in hindsight?<br />“Through the joint cooperation of the University High School and the University of Illinois Library, the library how has a practically unused, soft rolled 1949 14” carriage L. C. Smith typewriter with the necessary changes in keys and platen to serve our needs. The replacement came just in time, as the 1937 model we were using refused to function the week after its replacement arrived.”<br />1951-1952 Library Annual Report<br />Angst over the ephemeral<br />
  3. 3. Weirdest product ever<br />
  4. 4. We’ve been there before<br />VHS vs. Betamax<br />Vinyl => Tape => CD => Digital file<br />Common issues: Platform, copyright, ownership, sharing, management, pricing, marketing, delivery…<br />Corporate ethos vs. library ethos<br />Purchasing vs. licensing<br />Use by many vs. use by one<br />The library market didn’t start out as the target market<br />Growing pains<br />
  5. 5. “Now, Overdrive is quite good. But having one vendor become the gateway to e-books for libraries is probably not the best thing, at least not for libraries. What I want, and what we find libraries want, is to buy e-books. And when I say "buy," I mean like we buy print books. We write a check, and in return we get a copy that we can preserve long-term and lend out to one patron at a time. But so far, we're finding that a lot of publishers get confused when we talk to them about buying e-books. We'll say, "We want to buy your e-books, how much money do you want?" They'll say, "What do you mean ‘buy'?" It seems weird to have to explain what "buy" means, but we've all grown so accustomed to having digital transactions be accompanied by a 20-page license agreement.” <br />Brewster Kahle, Publisher’s Weekly, May 30, 2011<br />
  6. 6. “My biggest fear is that libraries will become customer service departments for a few large corporations. That publishers will become less and less interesting, and that a shift toward central points of control will undermine the major lesson from the Enlightenment, which is to encourage open, public, intellectual discourse.”<br />Brewster Kahle, Publisher’s Weekly, May 30, 2011<br />
  7. 7. “I think it is absolutely critical that we continue to develop a distributed system for e-books that is open and standards-based.” <br /> <br />“We can have many publishers, many booksellers, many libraries, many authors, and many, many readers, with no central points of control coming between them, just capitalism. Books are simply too important to have either a monopoly or duopoly evolve.”<br /> <br />Brewster Kahle, Publisher’s Weekly, May 30, 2011<br />Easy to say…<br />
  8. 8. How many steps does it take to download an ebook? See the Richland County Public Library video guide<br />Discoverability<br />Catalog?<br />Pathfinder tools?<br />We’re just not there yet<br />The devil is in the details<br />
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  11. 11. It’s not necessarily about balance<br />Your setting, your needs, your clientele<br />Nature of the source<br />Can you call your own shots?<br />Findability, findability, findability<br />“All politics is local” - Tip O’Neill<br />
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  13. 13. Making sure “complimentary online access” to the printed content of a purchased reference set is visible in the online catalog -<br />Response from Tech Support:<br />“I created a ticket in OTRS to have the books added to the orr. Please allow more time.”<br /> <br />
  14. 14. Every reader his or her “book” (Ranganathan)<br />Precludes single vendor, single source solutions<br />Curationand discovery<br /> Helping people find what they would never otherwise find, or even know about<br />Core values<br />
  15. 15. Byliner Originals<br />
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  17. 17. Privacy: The elephant in the room<br />Can they monitor what you’re reading?<br />Is the device ONLY compatible with books purchased from an associated eBook store?<br />Can they keep track of book searches?<br />Can they keep track of book purchases?<br />With whom can they share the information collected in non-aggregated form?<br />Can they share information outside the company without the customer's consent?<br />Do they lack mechanisms for customers to access, correct, or delete the information?<br />Electronic Frontier Foundation<br />
  18. 18. Albanese, Andrew Richard. May 30, 2011. “Brewster's Millions: ALA Preview 2011.” Publisher’s Weekly<br />Electronic Frontier Foundation. January 6, 2010. Updated and Corrected: E-Book Buyer’s Guide to Privacy.<br />Carolyn Starkey’s and Wendy Stephen’s LiveBinder “eBooks and eReaders go to School” at<br />Richland County Public Library. April 21, 2011. Download and Authorize Adobe Digital Editions.<br />References<br />