Breaking news from ALA: Total Boox announced this morning it has joined forces with a library and a hospital in Texas to launch the world’s first Free Reading ZoneSM (FREZSM). This is a monumental undertaking that hits at the heart of library outreach, digital literacy, and the point where the two meet to support and enable reading in ways not seen before.
As explained in the press release below, FREZSM is an effort to spread reading beyond libraries with the help of libraries and other organizations (for-profit and not-for-profit) willing to participate, and it turns out, many do. Brazoria County Library System (TX) will make Total Boox’s ebook collection available for free reading at a hospital in its community, making it the world’s first Free Reading Zone. Anyone on the hospital’s campus—patients, caregivers, visitors—will have free and unlimited access to 100,000 ebooks (including fiction, nonfiction, educational content, children’s, YA, etc.).
No Shelf Required is taking special interest in this project as it also hits at the heart of its own mission: to raise awareness among book, library, and information professionals of the potential of ebooks and econtent to transform the world from one where access to the written word is a privilege to one where it is the new norm. The portal will serve as the primary media supporter of this initiative and we will report on its development frequently, not only at this hospital in Texas but in various other places as they are announced.
Congratulations to all involved, especially Brazoria County Library System for setting an example for libraries everywhere and showing what is possible with ebooks and digital content. True leadership begins and ends with putting your best foot forward.
Full press release below. More coverage, including an op-ed on the significance of this initiative, to follow in the coming days. Continue reading Total Boox, a Library, and a Hospital Break New Ground with the Launch of the World’s First FREE READING ZONE