Monday, March 14, 2011

Librarians and the Kindle - The librarian boycott of HarperCollins

The Unquiet Librarian and her Kindle program
High school teacher Guven Witteveen wrote me about a terrific blog (The Unquiet Librarian) by Buffy Hamilton, media specialist/teacher-librarian at Creekview High School in Canton, Georgia.

  On March 6, I did a blog article featuring Hamilton's Creekville High School's Kindle program along with an upbeat photo of the students and Hamilton holding up their Kindles.

  Her blog article on their Kindle program is an update with FAQs.  They're about 4 months into the Kindle circulation program and, so far, it's a success, she writes.  She shares what is working well and challenges they've encountered.  Most of this was covered in the March 6 blog article here but is in her own words, and she adds a FAQ section for Librarians and Teachers that details the oft-asked questions about how it all works, with very thorough answers.
  Librarians and Teachers should definitely read the FAQ.

Librarians and the boycott against HarperCollins' new library-loan limit.
Kate Sheehan gives "A Librarian's Take On E-book Lending," explaining to HarperCollins that librarians are for the publishers and not against them.

This is in connection with the boycott joined by many librarians against HarperCollins' new policy that any HarperCollins e-book may be loaned by a public library only 26 times and then the e-book is disabled and the library will need to buy a new copy.  As mentioned here in late February, both Simon & Schuster and Macmillan do not allow libraries to loan their e-books at all and this new rule that went into effect March 7 isn't economically tenable for libraries in these strapped times with so many budget cuts affecting them.

On the boycott site's "Explanation" page, the boycotters ask:
' Until this policy is revoked, join us by not buying any new books or ebooks published by HarperCollins or any of its imprints: Amistad, Avon, Avon A, Avon Inspire, Avon Red, Balzer + Bray, Caedmon, Collins, Ecco, Eos, Greenwillow Books, Harper, Harper Business, Harper Design, Harper Paperbacks, Harper Perennial, Harper Perennial Modern Classics, HarperAudio, HarperBibles, HarperCollins Children's Audio, HarperCollins Children's Books, HarperCollins e-Books, HarperFestival, HarperLuxe, HarperOne, HarperTeen, ItBooks, Katherine Tegen Books, Rayo, Walden Pond Press, and William Morrow.

In addition, support your local library if it chooses to participate in the boycott and write a letter to HarperCollins explaining your actions. '

 Quite a bit more is explained on that page.  Librarians worry that other publishers will follow HarperCollins' lead if libraries agree to the policy.  As Sheehan explains, "If HarperCollins sets the bar for other publishers, libraries will be unable to start or grow their e-book collections."

Read much more at the story by Sheehan at Publisher Weekly.

A retirement gift for a creative librarian
At her retirement party, Visalia librarian Judy Wood was given (can you guess?) a Kindle :-).  She's about to open it in the photo at the right.  But although my interest began with the fact that this was chosen as a retirement gift for a librarian, it's the way she's lived her life that really struck me.  Most reaching this age are looking forward to just stepping back from 'work' and having more time for themselves, relaxing, etc.

  Instead she's going to be busy doing more of what she's done, as a volunteer.  Here's a description of what she's done. I'm going to quote most of it, because it's from a local paper and most would not see it, but it's such a change from the usual today:
' Wood has a way of bringing people together and making things happen.

She brought to Tulare County eight Dust Bowl immigrants who had made successes out of their lives. She put them on a panel and invited the community to attend an educational program on "The Grapes of Wrath."  Her first program filled the library.
  "It was my first shining moment," the 68-year-old Wood said.  "Doing programs has been a ball."

Her World War II program, called "Years of Valor, Years of Hope: Tulare County and the Years 1941-1946," can still be found on the Tulare County Library website.  From 2003-04, more than 100 Tulare County residents were interviewed by 20 people who learned how to take oral histories for the project.

Wood said she would return to the Tulare County Library as a volunteer, do more programs and help the Friends of the Library reach out to home-bound seniors.
. . .
Being a librarian was a second career for her. For many years, she worked as an accountant.
But her real dream was always to become a librarian, she said.
Ever since she was in the third grade, Wood said she wanted to be a librarian.

Finally, in her mid-50s, after raising two children and returning to college to finish her bachelor's degree in business and her master's degree in library science, she was hired at the Tulare County Library in January 1999.
. .
She's also a cancer survivor.  Following her retirement, she is going to have radiation treatment for six weeks at City of Hope in the Los Angeles area. '

She IS looking forward to spending time with her husband, planning a trip to Europe in the Fall.  I imagine she'll be enjoying her gift there.  She's an inspiration.

Kindle 3's   (UK: Kindle 3's),   DX Graphite

Check often: Temporarily-free late-listed non-classics or recently published ones
  Guide to finding Free Kindle books and Sources.  Top 100 free bestsellers.
UK-Only: recently published non-classics, bestsellers, or highest-rated ones
    Also, UK customers should see the UK store's Top 100 free bestsellers. Below are ways to Share this post if you'd like others to see it.
-- The Send to Kindle button works well only on Firefox currently.

Send to Kindle

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