Washington Hotline

Nancy Gravatt


Library leaders meet with publishers; respond to new ebook licensing program

Library leaders met in New York in December with publishers at Penguin Random House as they announced implementation of perpetual access for all of its ebook titles and cap prices per title. The new structure phased out the Penguin model of one-year lending and reduced the price for some previous Random House titles with a $65 cap on all Penguin Random House e-titles as of January 1, 2016. Among those participating were Erika Linke, associate dean and director of Research and Academic Services at Carnegie Mellon University Libraries and co-chair of ALA’s Digital Content Working Group; ALA President Sari Feldman, executive director of Cuyahoga County Public Library; ALA President-Elect Julie Todaro, dean of library services at Austin Community College; former ALA President Courtney Young, head librarian and professor of women’s studies at Pennsylvania State University; and Alan Inouye, director of ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy; among other ALA leaders. “Libraries will be pleased that the combined Penguin Random House license will ensure perpetual access to e-titles, and all will be glad the previous ceiling of $85 per title has been reduced,” said Feldman. “But I also know many of my colleagues will miss the flexibility of paying near-consumer prices for e-copies they may not wish to maintain indefinitely, and some will be unable to afford to provide access to the ebooks their communities seek.” The group expressed pride at progress that has been made, but Feldman said, “We know we’re not done. We need to leverage technology to improve access, integration, and user experience.”

ALA’s OITP releases new report on 3-D printing

ALA’s Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP) has released a new report, “Toward A More Printed Union: Library 3-D Printing Democratizes Creation” (PDF), a short paper that highlights the multifaceted 3-D printing leadership of libraries. The paper urges public and private sector leaders to leverage this leadership to unlock the full potential of 3-D printing technology for all Americans. The paper is the third 3-D printing publication released by OITP. The first two—a tip sheet (PDF) and a white paper (PDF) elucidating the policy implications of 3-D printing in the library context—are part of a series of informative resources labeled “Progress in the Making,” meant to help library professionals navigate the legal and regulatory complexities of providing 3-D printing as a service.

ReCreate video available

Last year, ALA became a founding member of a new copyright coalition called Re:Create. As Congress contemplates legislative change, the U.S. Copyright Office solicits public comments on software embedded in products and the 1201 rulemaking (soon), and as the federal government negotiates trade deals, Re:Create and its members engage with the message that copyright law should reflect how the public uses information and creates in the digital environment. We want a law that makes sense to people, and that supports fair use, free expression and an open Internet. Re:Create recently produced a video, which is available at www.recreatecoalition.org/video.

Don’t forget to register for National Library Legislative Day 2016

Registration is underway for National Library Legislative Day (NLLD) 2016, which will be held in Washington, D.C., May 2–3, 2016, at the Liaison Hotel. NLLD takes place over two days. Day 1: Advocates from across the country will hear subject matter experts brief them on the important library issues of the day, and there is a special reception on Capitol Hill that evening. Day 2: Attendees have the opportunity to visit with members of their state’s congressional delegation. Additional details and promotional materials are available on the ALA website. For more information or assistance of any kind, please contact Lisa Lindle at E-mail: or (202) 628-8140.

Copyright 2016© American Library Association

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