I have a dream. And it could be easily enough achieved I guess. I would love to have a few ebook readers to loan out to my users. I know of a few libraries that offer Kindles in circulation, like Texas A&M and Princeton. Penn State and Sony recently announced a project where Sony donated 100 readers to the libraries.
I see three immediate advantages in my situation (small physical library, small budget, no shelf space for fiction):
- no shelf space used
- possibility of download-on-demand for fiction or non-fiction titles. No guessing work on the library’s part as to what fiction to buy. User’s needs are met quickly.
- can serve advantageously the students who are visually impaired.
and a bonus one:
- cool “toy” –> nice PR opportunity
Now, are the younger generations (millenials) into e-readers? I’ve tested the waters with my local Student Governement. I think they were intrigued but not completely sold. I’ll keep working on it and prepare a good proposal for their support. Maybe when e-textbooks are used more here.
Meanwhile, if Sony wants to do another project with a smaller university campus with a polytechnic vision, I’m available for a meeting…
UPDATE Since I’ve written this post, Brigham Young University Library has decided to shelve their Kindle pilot for the time being, waiting for clear, written approval from Amazon. See the Mormon Times and LISNews for more details.