Uninhibited Macmillan Ebook Access for Libraries

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!

I’ve always been a bookworm. Some of my earliest memories were made at my local library. I can still remember racing to the library with my brother to get our hands on the biggest encyclopedia we could find so we could research animals for a book we were writing. I remember my excitement when I won a mystery-writing contest and the air conditioning that helped me escape the hot summer sun. 

As I grew up, my passion for reading turned into my scholastic journey, and I received my undergraduate degree in Japanese Language and Literature and my Masters in Library Science. Upon graduation, I earned my Librarian Certificate from the WA Secretary of State. 

Now, as a mother, I take my daughters to the library and enjoy using audiobooks after reading our bedtime stories. My girls fall asleep listening to new voices read different stories, and I’ve found that this practice helps them develop their own “natural reading voice.” It’s my hope they will be able to develop fond memories of the library like I did. 

However, my hope to see my girls enjoy the library is now being challenged by an embargo that Macmillan Publishers is placing on newly released eBooks for libraries. The new policy put in place will allow libraries to be allotted only a single eBook for their entire patronage for 8 weeks. The American Library Association has denounced Macmillan Publishers’ new lending model because “limiting access to new titles for libraries means limiting access for patrons most dependent on libraries.” 

I live in an area with a large (and techy) population. These new limitations will seriously hurt the patrons’ experience. If the library is already willing to pay extra fees associated with the digital format, they shouldn’t have to wait to purchase additional copies to be distributed to their patrons.

This policy change is detrimental to individuals and society as a whole. Because of this change, patrons of libraries lose the opportunity to keep up on what’s popular or learn something new until the limitation period elapses. This policy must be lifted.