ABQLA Statement on Harper Collin’s eBooks Lending Policy

As librarians, we understand that the exponential growth of e-books will require some adaptation of the existing model of distribution. However, we also feel that setting arbitrary constraints on e-books is detrimental to many partners within the book industry and does not acknowledge the potential of digital format.

Library copies of Harper Collins e-books are already protected by the safeguard DRM which limits one e-book to one reader at a time. In addition, North American libraries using OverDrive have always limited all e-book borrowing privileges to members with valid library cards residing in a library’s district.

We believe that imposing an additional constraint by limiting all Harper Collins e-books to a maximum of 26 circulations is a precedent that is harmful to libraries and to the reading public. We urge Harper Collins to reconsider this policy as it will seriously limit the ability of libraries to promote literacy and access to information, and will ultimately limit the options for readers.

Consequently, we are recommending to ABQLA members that their libraries consider boycotting Harper Collins e-books as long as this decision remains in effect.

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