Sunday, January 13, 2008

Dutch public libraries in e-books

The Dutch service organisation for libraries NBD/Biblion will offer public libraries a collection of digital and audio books within two months. The members of the public library will be able to download e-books and audio books at home. The new online service is an addition to music download service for members of the public library, which was started late 2005.

The service organisation will produce a portal, which will be launched for trial in the second quarter of the year. There is a curious detail: normally e-books can be rented out to members instantaneously. However, in this case a limited number can rent the e-book copies due to license limitations. In first instance a few hundreds Dutch language e-books will be available, included copyright ones, as well as a few thousand English language books in the public domain.

In The Netherlands activities concerning e-books are fragmented. iRex Technologies is selling the iLiad. There is an online e-book site. The Dutch book chain Selexyz has started to sell the e-book reader Iliad and e-books (the company sold already more than 150 e-book readers). The software development company Edupaper has held a trial in a school environment and is now selling e-book readers like the Iliad, Booken Cybook, Polymer Vision Readius. And a few public libraries, among which the public library of my hometown Almere, bought e-book readers to rent them out. However, there is no united consumer promoting campaign for e-book readers and e-books by manufacturers, publishers, developers, book shops and libraries.

Blog Posting Number: 976

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