Milford Public Library: Why There Is A Wait For E-Books

MILFORD, CT – The Milford Public Library has received numerous questions about wait times to access digital books and other media.

March 24, 2022 – 4:08 pm

April News at the Library!

During the pandemic we saw a huge increase in the number of patrons accessing our downloadable books, audiobooks, and magazines. With that usage came increased questions on the size of our e-content collection, and why there would be any wait time or hold queues for a digital file. The short answer is that public libraries have a much different relationship with publishers when it comes to purchasing and lending out downloadable content than you as a private consumer do.

Libraries have been struggling to obtain and provide equitable access to eBooks and eAudiobooks for years. The issues for libraries include a much higher per item purchase cost than private consumers have, no ownership of the title after purchase (libraries are only allowed to lease copies, with licenses which expire after a set period or number of checkouts), and the need to go through third party platforms (such as Overdrive) to host and manage the library content. Additionally, many publishers often holdback popular titles or imprints from the library market.

Libraries and publishers have always worked together to connect readers with books. We have a communal, and vested, interest in a successful publishing industry and in providing equitable access to published content.

Recently, Connecticut has introduced a bill that would set equitable contract terms for the pricing and availability of library eBooks. More information on the eBook issue, and this proposed bill (SB 131), can be found on the Connecticut Library Association website. As always, I am happy to answer any questions about this issue, or other library services.

Please check out our April Program calendar for lots of new programs! We welcome (in person) Milford’s own Poet Laureate, Joan Kwon Glass, who will read from her latest poetry collection, the return of our ever-popular monthly genealogy series, and movies and story times for children. We also continue to host many programs on Zoom!

And, as I mention every month – a HUGE thank you to our Friends of the Milford Library for funding and supporting our programs. Would you like to get more involved with the Friends? They are looking to fill a few volunteer positions, or simply become a member! Information on our Friends of the Library is on the library website: milfordlibrary.org.

Best,

Chris Angeli

Library Director

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