January 24, 2022

Massachusetts: “Libraries Demand a New Deal on Ebooks”

From The Boston Globe:

Public library patrons can’t get enough of free digital downloads these days; they’re snapping up ebooks and audiobooks at a record pace. But it’s not all good news for public libraries. They are often charged far more than consumers for digital books, and sometimes publishers won’t sell to libraries at all.

Now librarians are teaming up with Massachusetts lawmakers to demand a new deal. They’re calling for a law that would compel publishers to make all their digital products available to public libraries on “reasonable terms.”

Democratic State Rep. Ruth Balser modeled the bill after a law enacted in Maryland in May. Balser said she wants to ensure that libraries can get access to every published ebook and audiobook. “My understanding is Amazon and the other online publishers limit how much of their information is available to public libraries,” Balser said. “My bill doesn’t directly touch the issue of cost. It just says they can’t not sell to libraries.”

Learn More, Read the Complete Article (approx. 830 words)

Read the Massachusetts Legislation H.4120 ||| SD. 2749

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.