Simon & Schuster Loosens Restrictions on Library eBook Distribution

Simon & Schuster Loosens Restrictions on Library eBook Distribution Digital Library Library eBooks Publishing When Simon & Schuster expanded its library ebook distribution in June, they required all libraries who bought S&S ebooks for their collections to also add a buy button to the listings in the libraries' catalogs. Today S&S relaxed that restriction, possibly in the hopes that more libraries would carry S&S titles.

The ALA announced the news today in a press release, quoting ALA President Courtney Young as saying that the change "speaks to the importance of sustaining conversations among librarians, publishers, distributors and authors to continue advancing our shared goals of connecting writers and readers".

Given that the buy buttons would be expected to drive sales, this is a rather curious decision on their part, but I suspect that S&S dropped the requirement because it wasn't generating enough money from sales. This might be due to library patrons not being in a buying mood, but it could also be a result of a flawed system.

When I checked my local library (an OverDrive client) I found that it offered 5 S&S ebook titles in its catalog. All 5 had buy buttons, but only two of the titles had buttons leading to major ebookstores. The other 3 only included the option of buying from Library Bin. I've never heard of that bookstore, so I would not be inclined to shop there.

It's not clear why the other ebookstores aren't being listed (especially since I have the option of reading all 5 titles as Kindle ebooks) but if S&S wasn't seeing enough sales then it would make little sense to keep the requirement.

Simon & Schuster's other restriction, a 1 year expiring license, is bad enough.

 image  by andryn2006

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: He's here to chew bubble gum and fix broken websites, and he is all out of bubble gum. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills at the drop of a hat. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

1 Comment

  1. […] as I reported last week, OverDrive isn’t adequately supporting the option here in the US. Of the 5 S&S titles in […]

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top