This is the third in a series of articles on ebook models in K-12 or school libraries. The first article was about why school librarians would want to know about anything as abstract as an ebook business model (hint: knowing the basic models will help you choose the best products to meet your library’s goals). The second article examined the four basic models and boiled them down to their simplest levels. One treats ebooks like printed books. One treats ebooks like journal articles. One treats ebooks like books in a bookstore. One treats ebooks like shared resources. Today’s article will show how to use these basic concepts to select the best kinds of ebook products for your library.
Some issues to keep in mind
Before going further, let’s look at some of the issues that come with ebooks in school libraries. We want to have these in mind as we consider how to create a combination of products with different ebook business models. These issues involve three areas: the supplier’s platform and business model, assuring that the ebooks are used to support the educational goals of the school, and bridging the digital divide.
To begin with the platform and business model issues, we need to understand what an ebook platform is, and why it is important. We already know what a business model is and how the four kinds of business models affect school libraries. The platform is the specific technology that an ebook supplier uses to provide ebooks. It includes a web-based interface for student use. It may include apps that make the books readable on mobile devices. It will have an administrative interface or dashboard for you to use so you can control loan periods, track usage, etc. It may also have a teacher interface so that teachers can assign reading to students, and then monitor their progress. If you need to select and purchase individual ebooks before your students can read them, it will also include a book ordering function. In other words, the platform supports everything you, your students and your teachers do with ebooks. Without the platform, you cannot use the ebooks. Continue reading Choosing Ebook Platforms for K-12 Libraries
Below is a summary of various news articles and related Apple sites discussing the Apple announcement today about digital textbooks.
General news articles:
Apple’s new in-app selling rules are in effect, requiring retailers to give Apple 30% of revenues from book sales. As a result, Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, and Google Books have stopped selling books through their apps. SONY’s app was rejected back in February for the same reasons. There’s lots of news coverage, a few are linked below:
From Eric Hellman’s Go To Hellman blog. Please offer your comments to Eric at the Go To Hellman blog.
Here’s the third section of my draft of a book chapter for a book edited by No Shelf Required‘s Sue Polanka. I previously posted the introduction; and What does Open Access mean for eBooks subsequent posts will cover Open Access E-Books in Libraries. Note that while the blog always uses “ebook” as one word, the book will use the hyphenated form, “e-book”. The comments on the second section prompted me to make significant revisions, which I have posted.
Business Models for Creation of Open Access E-Books
Any model for e-book publishing must have a business model for recouping the expenses of production: reviewing, editing, formatting, design, etc. In this section, we’ll review methods that can be used to support Open Access e-book publishing. Continue reading Open Access eBooks, Part 3
From an iPublishCentral press release: Sesame Workshop, the non-profit organization that produces Sesame Street, and Impelsys today announced the launch of the Sesame Street eBookstore iPad app. The app provides access to more than 150 Sesame Street eBooks, which are also available via an online subscription at http://ebooks.sesamestreet.org/.
The app is available for free in Apple’s App Store. Users can browse title selection free of charge. To read all eBook titles, the app invites users to subscribe to either one month of full access for $3.99 or one year of unlimited access for $39.99. Current subscribers of the Sesame Street eBookstore can use the app to access their bookshelf with an iPad and will not need to make an additional subscription purchase.
The app was just released this month and quickly rocketed into the Top 10 Free Apps in the “Books” category on Apple’s iTunes store. Continue reading Sesame Street eBookstore iPad app launched
Springer, who has existing eRetail partnerships with Amazon, Apple, Barnes & Noble, and others, announced this week the addition of the Google eBookstore for Springer eBook titles.
From their press release: Springer eBooks can now also be purchased via Google’s eBookstore. Google currently holds the biggest collection of Springer eBooks with more than 52,000 books, which is a combination of physically scanned books published prior to 2006 and PDF file submissions since 2006. Springer adds 4,000 newly published titles per year.
Springer eBooks are also available on Amazon for the Kindle, and in the near future Barnes & Noble for the NookStudy.com platform, Kobo Books, B&T BLIO, Entourage and Apple’s iBooks, which is now receiving books in the free and open ebook format ePub. Springer will soon also deliver books in ePub format to Amazon for the Kindle. Continue reading Springer eBooks now also available in the Google eBookstore
From an OverDrive Press Release: Public, school, and college libraries now provide direct eBook downloads on the iPad® with the free OverDrive® Media Consoleâ„¢ app. The optimized app enables users at more than 13,000 libraries worldwide to wirelessly download and enjoy eBooks and digital audiobooks from a local library on the Apple® device. Popular and best-selling titles, including “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” by Stieg Larsson, “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand, and “The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins, are a few of the Most Downloaded Books from the Library (www.overdrive.com/mostdownloaded). These digital books and more in popular genres like romance, mystery, thriller, and virtually every subject can now be borrowed from libraries and enjoyed in an optimized iPad app.
The OverDrive Media Console app for iPad is available in the App Store (http://bit.ly/OverDriveApp). To see if your library is a member of the OverDrive network, visit http://search.overdrive.com. Continue reading OverDrive Media Console app for iPad – direct library eBook & audiobook downloads
OverDrive (www.overdrive.com) has released apps for iPhone® and Androidâ„¢ that enable users to download library eBooks and audiobooks directly to their devices for the first time. The free apps include a “Get Books” feature that guides users to their local library’s digital catalog of best-selling and new release titles, allowing them to easily browse, check out, and download with just their device. More than 13,000 public libraries, schools, colleges, and universities now offer eBook and audiobook downloads via OverDrive, including institutions in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, and nine other countries. Continue reading OverDrive apps for iPhone and Android enable direct library downloads
From an OCLC Press Release: In addition to the 200 million records contributed by OCLC member libraries worldwide, 500 million items from leading publishers, aggregators and mass digitization efforts are also now accessible through WorldCat Local.
OCLC has recently added content to WorldCat Local from EBSCO; Gale, part of Cengage Learning; Modern Language Association; ProQuest and the U.S. Department of Energy. There are now more than 400 million articles, 170 million books, 10 million eBooks and 1,100 databases accessible through the WorldCat Local service.
Additional agreements have been signed with ABC-CLIO, American Psychological Association, Association for Computing Machinery, BioMed Central, BioOne, Cambridge University Press, Emerald, IGI Global, Sabinet, Sage, Taylor & Francis and World Bank Publications. Continue reading More Content Added to WorldCat Local
Casper Grathwohl from Oxford University Press and Kassidy Lackey from Handmark spoke about mobile applications for reference tools. Casper provided examples of several vendor-based apps like Gale’s AccessMyLibrary, university library mobile apps, and some apps designed for OUP. OUP has 85 apps, which cover a variety of reference subjects. These are marketed mostly to the consumer and OUP reports close to 1 million in application revenue, which is only a small part of their complete revenue. Casper was surprised to see that libraries and publishers are not yet working together on mobile apps but felt that the opportunities are available, particularly in the area of discovery since both parties have a vested interest in seeing use of the content. Continue reading Charleston Conference – Mobile Reference Apps
A few weeks ago, Gale tweeted about the college version of it’s mobile application, AccessMyLibrary. This week, they have officially announced the College Edition and an Android version for public libraries.
From Gale’s Press Release: The AML College Edition is the first Gale app for college students and gives them anytime, anywhere access to the Gale resources available through their college library. Students can use the app to locate their school and then authenticate for the school year by providing their school-issued email address.
The AML Public Edition Android app allows researchers using an Android device to access Gale resources through public libraries within a 10-mile radius, similar to the Public Edition applications already created for Apple devices.
Rather than sifting through internet sites that aren’t always reliable, AccessMyLibrary (AML) apps allow students and patrons instant access to credible library reference sources in seconds. With a simple click of the app, users can find reliable information from over 20,000 magazines and journals and thousands of encyclopedias covering many topics. Whether looking for health and science information, business plans or auto repair manuals, all is available from any location on the go.
More information on Gale’s apps is available on their website.
ASP just announced new functionality for their video products. The following is from an email from ASP: I am pleased to let you know that we now have “Send-to-Mobile” functionality for our video collections as well as our streaming music collections. Videos in Dance in Video and Opera in Video can now be sent to a user’s mobile device for on-the-go viewing.
As with our streaming music collections, you will go to a streaming video databases and look for a cell phone icon (“Send-to-Mobile”) next to each title. Wherever you see that icon you can click it and obtain a “shortlink” to send and enable playback on your mobile device; the link is active for 48 hours. We provide several methods to send this link: Continue reading Alexander Street Press Launches Send-to-Mobile Functionality
Gale released a college version of the Access My Library iPhone app. Using a college email address, students can gain access to Gale resources using their mobile device. The public library version, which was released a while back, offers apple and android apps, the school library and college versions are for apple products only right now. More info on all Gale AML apps is on their website.
Received this email from Ingram today: Ingram’s VitalSource launches Bookshelf® application for iPadâ„¢, iPhone®, and iPod Touch®now offers three ways to access content
LA VERGNE, TN — Vital Source Technologies, Inc., the leading e-textbook solution provider for publishers, academic institutions and students today announced the availability of the VitalSource Bookshelf application for Apple’s iPadâ„¢, iPhone®, and iPod Touch®.
Continue reading Ingram Launches VitalSource Bookshelf application for iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch
Interesting article in SSP”s Scholarly Kitchen by Joseph Espisito, “The POD Booby Trap and the Lure of Open Access Books.” Espisito discusses “the booby trap” of open access, stating, “The unfortunate, unstated premise of those who fall into the POD booby trap is that they really don’t and can’t believe in the emerging primacy of digital text. The trap is set for anyone who thinks that print is superior for enough readers to make print a long-term viable option. This is highly doubtful. E-books have already reached the tipping point. In just a couple months, Apple has sold millions of e-books from its online bookstore, millions that come on top of the tens of millions sold by Amazon for its Kindle and Stanza brands. And Google Editions haven’t even launched yet. No more make-believe. If we want the cultural advantages of broad dissemination of scholarly texts through open access, then let’s step up and pay for it. Authors, department heads, university provosts, granting agencies all of these have a stake, or claim to, in the distribution of academic material. Let the stakeholders fund the stake.”
Let the stakeholders fund the stake. This sounds exactly like a plan that Frances Pinter from Bloomsbury Academic is trying to promote. She spoke about it at the O’Reilly TOC conference and I had a follow up interview with her in March. She’ll be keynoting on this exact topic at The Charleston Conference in November.