Comment from infoDOCKET Founder/Editor Gary Price:
It would interesting (and useful) to research and learn how many of these books and other sources are available REMOTELY and 24x7x365 (with a library card) from various public libraries around the U.S. and if library users were aware of these services/resources vs. paying for access to a collection. It also shows that some consumers are willing to pay a monthly fee for content that libraries also pay for/subsidize (with tax dollars) and then offer to cardholders at no charge.
In other words, what does Scribd and services like it mean in the long term for public library services especially if they are not promoted/marketed to current and potential users? These are not new questions. However, perhaps this is the time to find answers, discuss, plan?
Scribd’s $8.99/month subscription service started out with only ebooks. Over time, it’s expanded to audiobooks, sheet music, documents, magazines — and, as of Tuesday, newspapers. “Select articles” from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Guardian, as well as some archival content from the Financial Times, will now be available to Scribd subscribers.
And Scribd says there are quite a lot of subscribers: The service now has over half a million paying subscribers, paying $8.99 a month, and the company is profitable. I was so surprised by the subscriber number that I asked CEO Trip Adler to repeat himself; it’s true, he said: “We have a $50 million revenue run rate.” The San Francisco–based company now has more than 110 employees.