The Okanagan Regional Library is joining other libraries across the U.S. and Canada that have launched a petition against Macmillan Publishing, which is significantly limiting the availability of eBooks to all libraries (Photo: American Library Association)

Okanagan Regional Library joins fight against Macmillan Publishers’ e-book restrictions

The big-five publisher has limited the number of new-release e-book titles libraries can purchase

The Okanagan Regional Library has joined in a battle against Macmillan Publishers, which is limiting how many library users can access its new e-book releases.

As of Friday, Nov. 1, the big-five publisher has restricted all libraries to purchasing only one copy of a new e-book title for the first eight weeks after a book is released.

After those eight weeks, additional copies will then be accessible for two years.

Libraries from across the U.S. and Canada have responded with a petition to stop the embargo, which was announced by Macmillan Publishers in July.

“Because of this change … ORL will be allowed only one copy of an e-book to serve our population of 400,000 people for the first two months,” said Don Nettleton, chief executive officer of the Okanagan Regional Library.

“This change will create a barrier for customers who cannot afford to purchase digital content, and for those who rely on their public library for accessing digital information,”

Nettleton said people with visual or learning disabilities are the ones who will be most affected, as they often rely on eBooks to easily change font sizes.

He added that libraries already pay higher prices for e-books compared to books in print, and that the embargo will result in longer wait times for e-books.

“We will continue to stand up for your right to access information in all forms, including newly released e-books,” said Nettleton.

The petition was created by the American Library Association (ALA), which launched a public action campaign on Sept. 11 opposing what the association calls “arbitrary restrictions on library e-book lending.”

“ALA’s goal is to send a clear message to Macmillan’s CEO John Sargent: e-book access should be neither denied nor delayed,” said ALA Executive Director Mary Ghikas on Sept. 11.

The association has been rallying public support on social media with the hashtag #eBooksforAll.

The petition has garnered more than 178,000 signatures so far. To sign the petition, visit ebooksforall.org.

READ MORE: Talks break down between B.C.’s 911 operators, E-Comm but no job action planned

READ MORE: Summerland librarian retires after 30 years


Brendan Shykora
Reporter, Vernon Morning Star
Email me at Brendan.Shykora@vernonmorningstar.com
Follow us: Facebook | Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon perfect getaway for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, mayor says

Family-oriented community also home to Royal interests; film and helicopter industries

Group builds shelters for Vernon’s stray cats

Twenty insulated cat shelters were constructed by volunteers and delivered around town

True Stories: memoir-writers, reading at Vernon centre

Reading with local North Okanagan writers Art Dalton, Patti Shales Lefkos, Raven Dahl, Janelle Hardy

WATCH: Don’t just blame AIM, all North Okanagan road crews struggling

City streets are just as bad, if not worse, than highways

Several deer spotted in Vernon’s BX

One resident spotted a herd of seven in her neighbourhood

Older Canadians highlighted in Kelowna film project to fight ageism

The project is part of a campaign to combat ageism

Closed mills, housing surge support a positive forecast for lumber industries

B.C. lumber producers have closed mills accounting for 18% of province’s capacity, RBC report says

Good Samaritan pays part of rent for B.C. woman facing eviction in can-collecting dispute

Zora Hlevnjak, 76, supplements her pension by collecting cans and receiving public donations

Princeton – a Prince Town in waiting?

The Town of Princeton has been waiting 160 years for a Royal… Continue reading

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle on the move… to Kelowna?

The royal couple is looking for some new digs and Kelowna has a lot to offer!

UBCO partners with Boeing to test new anti-ice coating technology

The coating could one day be applied to all airplanes to prevent ice buildup

Revelstoke already double last year’s snowfall

The city is just below halfway to the snowiest winter on record

Kelowna’s last video store, Leo’s Videos, to remain open despite failed sale

Kelowna’s last video rental store will remain open and under its namesake’s ownership

COLUMN: Choosing a face to show the world

It will not be easy to select the face to display on Canada’s new $5 bill

Most Read