To assist libraries in informing the public about e-book lending practices, the American Library Association (ALA) released today the “ALA E-book Media & Communications Toolkit,” a set of materials that will support librarians in taking action in their communities. One of the tools in the toolkit is a frequently asked questions page that provides some basic information about the depth and scope of this problem.
Developed by the ALA’s Digital Content and Libraries Working Group (DCWG), the toolkit provides resources for library supporters interested in informing the public of the role that libraries play in building literate and knowledgeable communities. Additionally, the toolkit provides guidance on ways to use the media templates, as well as ALA talking points, e-book data, and public service announcement scripts.
“The library community cannot sit by while publishers openly refuse to sell libraries the e-books that they need to serve their patrons,” said ALA President Maureen Sullivan, who recently led several library meetings with publishers. “Librarians and our allies must speak out more forcefully in communities across the country. Everyone needs to know that libraries offer e-books and 21st century library services, but we are unable to offer all the e-reading choices our patrons demand and deserve.”
The Digital Content & Libraries Working Group, a representative group made up of 27 ALA members from various types of libraries, advises the Association on issues related to libraries and digital content, and the provision of equitable access to digital content for all. The group has developed a number of other resources about e-books, including the report “Ebook Business Models for Public Libraries,” a digital rights management “Tip Sheet,” and an E-Content supplement to American Libraries magazine.