Round up #235: Little Free Library, “Buy It Now” public library button
The ILMK Round ups are short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.
Bloomberg: “Amazon Will Probably Dominate Books-by-Subscription, Too”
In my annual post predicting the coming year in e-books
I said that I thought Amazon would do a subscription service for adults this year…a way to pay for e-books by the month or year, rather than paying for each e-book separately.
On January 12th, I wrote this one:
where I coined the term “subser” for “subscription service”, and went into the idea in more depth.
Well, three days later, BloombergBusinessweek ran this
Thanks to the reader who sent me a heads-up for that article in a private e-mail! I don’t get to my e-mail very quickly, as opposed to comments made on this blog, but I’ll eventually get back to you on your other questions. 🙂 To answer one point, my subser post wasn’t inspired by Bloomberg’s…and, even though I was first, I’d be pretty sure theirs wasn’t inspired by mine. 😉
The article (which is worth reading) looks at the idea of subsers, and how we can expect Amazon to “Bigfoot it” and dominate there. That’s my guess as well…
Library “Buy It Now” button
Another reader sent me a private e-mail to alert me to this
I suspect some of you will have a strong reaction to what is said in the story.
The basic idea is this:
Simon & Schuster is expanding a pilot program to fifteen public libraries that will allow patrons there to borrow the publishers’ e-books.
I’ve written about that issue in the past…that publishers don’t freely allow public libraries to loan their books, and even when they do, there may be significant restrictions.
Well, this deal comes with an interesting stipulation.
The libraries must have “Buy It Now” button on their websites.
You go to the library’s website to borrow a book, and where you would do that, there is also a choice to buy it.
Why would you buy it when you are about to borrow it for free?
It’s very common that popular e-books have long waiting lists at public libraries, for one thing. If you saw you were number twelve in line, and you figured the book is out for two weeks at a time, you’d have to wait about six weeks to get it.
I know some of you are wondering why you have to wait for an e-book: can’t the library just make a copy for you?
Nope: their licenses restrict how many people can have a copy at a time…and that restriction may be only one patron for each license you purchase (and that license can be many times more expensive than a regular customer would pay to get the book from Amazon).
What’s that sound I hear? Is it skin crawling? 😉 Yep…I do understand if some of you are not happy about commerce getting into the public library…which you may pay for with your property taxes or through a bond measure.
I don’t like it being a condition of having the books…if it was more voluntary, I’d understand.
This is happening, in part, through a program from Overdrive called
You can buy books through that website, and part of your purchase price goes to your public library…at least, it does if you got to the site from your library.
Public libraries are facing a lot of challenges, and I can understand looking at creative solutions. There isn’t anything here that forces the public to buy, and the only “advertising” is for the book itself.
Little Free Libraries
One thing that comes up sometimes is what to do with your p-books (paperbooks) when you have switched to e-books.
Well, the majority of people who read e-books also read p-books, from what I understand. I don’t…not for new books. I do go and consult my old p-books sometimes, and I haven’t parted with them. Many people want to do that, though, and that seems reasonable.
One thing you might be wanting to do is to share your books with someone who might not otherwise have them.
An interesting idea recently appeared near us, and there are reportedly more than 10,000 of them around.
It’s a little thing that sort of looks like a glass-fronted birdhouse (if you were trying to house an emperor penguin…it’s about a meter tall, I’d say).
There are books in there…and you can leave one or take one (we left one).
It’s part of an organization called
They are working to get these Little Free Libraries all over the place.
I do think this is a great thing! You can donate to support it (it is tax-deductible) at the website I linked above.
You can also see a map there with locations…perhaps there is one in your neighborhood!
MYK changes still rolling out
I recently wrote about some
That’s the Manage Your Kindle page from Amazon.
It’s weird: I’ve only seen it in Silk on my Kindle Fire, even though I’ve checked in another browser on that device, and three browsers on my desktop.
I’ve logged out and logged back in…that didn’t make it appear.
Amazon has indicated that, when a change like this occurs, it could take a week or so before pretty much everybody gets it. I think that’s because you are hitting different servers, and they may not update all the servers at once (it’s probably better policy not to do that, in case something goes wrong).
I’ve also heard that people are seeing different things, and that those things are changing, so this may certainly be a work in progress.
I’ll report back on it when it seems to be more stable and more available. 🙂
What do you think? Is it okay with you that there would be a “Buy It Now” button on your public library’s website? If you don’t like it, is it better to have that or not have the books from a major publisher? Have you seen a Little Free Library? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.
Speaking of which: I really appreciate it when readers give me links to stories! The best way to do it is to comment on the blog: I review that most often. If you want your comment to be private (so I don’t post it publicly), please let me know at the beginning of your comment.
**Nominate a child to be given a free Kindle at Give a Kid a Kindle**
This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.