Pierre Dillenbourg, the academic director of the École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), spoke on his expertise, massive open online courses (MOOCs), during the August 20 plenary session at the 2014 World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) in Lyon, France. Dillenbourg organized the first European summit on MOOCs in 2013, and spoke both passionately and humorously.
American Library Association (ALA) President Courtney Young and Barbara Lison, a representative of the German library association Bibliothek & Information Deutschland (BID), signed an agreement on Tuesday, August 19, at the World Library and Information Congress (WLIC) in Lyon, France, establishing a collaboration between the two organizations through 2019.
Denver Public Library (DPL) has announced a new service called Volume. The product is intriguing: 37 albums of DRM-free downloadable or streamable music by Colorado artists. The music is available to any DPL cardholder for two years as a downloadable file; after that, it will be archived by the library, and may be rebroadcast.
IFLA’s World Library Information Congress 2014 in Lyon, France offers a modest-sized but busy exhibit hall. The hall opened Monday to a large crowd sampling new database offerings as well as information about associations and vendors from across the world. ALA’s booth was packed for the opening, and has remained busy.
Sometimes, low tech trumps high tech. At Tuesday morning’s plenary session of IFLA’s World Library and Information Congress 2014 in Lyon, French journalist Florence Aubenas talked about her kidnapping and six-month imprisonment in Iraq in 2005 and the time since.
Douglas Preston, author of techno-thriller and horror novels, wrote a letter protesting the “thuggery” of Amazon against Hachette authors, and urging his fans to let Jeff Bezos know they were upset, too. The campaign has now attracted the support of many other authors, over 900 names big and small.
So much hinges on copyright. The doctrine of First Sale meant that publishers couldn’t lock libraries out of the market. But digital works, like software, got swept under licensing agreements, with the power to place all kinds of restrictions on the sale resting almost entirely with the copyright holder.
Read the Douglas County (Colo.) Libraries Ebook Report as a PDF file.
As my colleagues at Douglas County (Colo.) Libraries have called to my attention, the DCL report has thus far mostly illuminated the difference between what libraries and consumers pay for ebooks. Alas, as this report again makes clear, that staggering inequity continues.
Macmillan announced last week that it is adding its frontlist titles to its backlist pilot for public libraries, making its complete ebook catalog available for the first time. All of their titles are available for a 2-year/52-loan period (whichever comes first). Macmillan ebooks are available to individual public libraries only, not to consortia.
You think publishing and libraries have it bad? Talk to the newspapers.
After 150 years of award-winning reporting, Denver’s Rocky Mountain News shut its doors in 2009. Shortly after that, I happened to meet with Patti Thorn, who had been the highly respected chief book critic of the Rocky, and served as editor of the book review pages. We talked about what we agreed was a trend to be watched: the rise of self-publishing.