Simultaneous Use – Great Idea from Kacy Helwick

I’m working my way through the May 2016 issue of American Libraries. I just ran across a letter from Kacy Helwick (p. 8) of New Orleans that sounded intriguing and possibly win-win for libraries and publishers.

Kacy’s idea is that where publishers impose ebook circulation limits, that e-book ought to have simultaneous usage. That is, more than one patron up to the number specified in the circulation limit ought to be able to use the eb00k at the same time. The benefit to patrons is immediate access for more people. The library’s benefit is knowing they are buying titles that will be used. The publisher’s benefit is that the library will probably buy more copies more quickly, increasing their sales.

While this model does NOT provide for preservation, it does seem like a better way to handle publisher imposed circulation limits than the current model of treating it just like a print book with a 24 circulation destruct timer.


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