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Old 2012-03-14, 02:05 PM   #16
rsambuca
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That doesn't offer libraries enough cost control. Users will be able to take out all the copies immediately, and then the library has to decide to either purchase a new copy or allow their collection to be diminished.
Yeah, but as I mentioned, the ebooks would have to be priced accordingly lower than standard books for this to work. The libraries could monitor the demand via the holds placed.

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The publishers wouldn't like this system either as it doesn't create the artificial scarcity which they desire. With new releases they hope library users will buy the item rather than wait their turn. If they don't have to wait, why buy it?
Artifical scarcity - I think you hit the nail on the head there.

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There are also questions as to whether that would be allowed under the legislation under which your local library system operates, and whether it would contravene the established principles of that library system, as they would essentially be giving out free copies of materials rather than loaning materials.
I don't really understand your point here. Why is it giving out free copies? The copies would expire in 3 weeks just as they do now. The books can also be lent out exactly the same number of times as they are now. It just seems to me that the libraries and publishers are trying really really hard to make ebooks work exactly the same as physical printed books, but in reality, they are different. There are pros and cons to each, but why not embrace the new features rather than intentionally trying to hinder them?
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Old 2012-03-14, 04:18 PM   #17
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Just as an FYI, the library may have many copies of a particular e-Book, depending on expected (and then afterwards perhaps also realized) demand. No one said they only have one copy of a particular eBook.

This would, of course, depend on the library involved and the book involved. I would guess that the Toronto library may have a hundred copies of a particular, popular eBook in the same way they have (or used to have) tens/hundreds of paper books throughout the various branches.

As I stated earlier, my wife has never had to wait long for her "holds", with some books available right away and she always has several books on her reader. She reads several books a week (fast reader). ie, the system works. My brother and his wife are similar, although they probably read slightly fewer books than my wife. Same for friends who "borrow". I guess my point is, based on experience from the many users I know, there is no problem here.
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Old 2012-03-14, 08:02 PM   #18
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I don't really understand your point here. Why is it giving out free copies? The copies would expire in 3 weeks just as they do now. The books can also be lent out exactly the same number of times as they are now. It just seems to me that the libraries and publishers are trying really really hard to make ebooks work exactly the same as physical printed books, but in reality, they are different. There are pros and cons to each, but why not embrace the new features rather than intentionally trying to hinder them?
Keep in mind that the legislation surrounding libraries in most regions was written long before ebooks were a consideration. It might be considered the same as giving away rather than loaning because once "returned" the item will not be available for other users. Library legislation may need to revised for ebooks.

Artificial scarcity is exactly what they want, and it's hard to blame them. They are protecting their industry. Without artificial scarcity, the financial reward of writing may drop dramatically, which would put the entire industry at risk.
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