RIP Dewey Decimal? Are you ready to move on?
News Flash: Libraries are going digital. Is there nothing you can’t do online these days? Gone are the days of sifting through drawers and drawers of Dewey Decimal cards—yellow with age, the most popular entries worn soft and supple, and weary at the edges. I remember learning (and loving) how to use the classification system during my first pre-K visit to the school library. And here’s the thing: I Am NOT That Old! (I am far too modest to tell you my exact age, but trust me, pre-K was not so long ago for me.) It is simply mind-bending, how far and fast the ritual of reading has come.
One of the latest developments in the literary world is digital lending. Sounds pretty cool, right? Booklr thought so, too, so we did a little research at the New York Public Library (NYPL). Here’s the lowdown:
- Books may be “downloaded-out” for 14-21 days
- Books may be read via any ebook-compatible device
- 35,000 titles are currently available
- Logistics of e-borrowing are still somewhat traditional:
The availability of an e-book is still constrained by the number of e-copies on hand. (Ex. NYPL has 22 e-copies of 1Q84, Haruki Murakami’s latest novel, all of which are currently “downloaded-out”, and there are 265 patrons waiting to download the e-book.)
Many publishers have been wary of selling e-books to libraries, fearing drastic effects on commercial sales, but considering that public libraries make up 10% of books sales in the U.S. each year, publishers can’t afford to not work out a compromise.
Would you subscribe to a digital library?