HarperCollins has announced a 26 loan limit on e-book lending for libraries, reports Library Journal. This means that new e-books licensed to libraries from vendors can only be loaned 26 times before the license expires and a new one must be purchased.
According to LJ, libraries first got wind of this development in a note from OverDrive last week, in which CEO Steve Potash wrote “Next week, OverDrive will communicate a licensing change from a publisher that, while still operating under the one-copy/one-user model, will include a checkout limit for each eBook licensed.” HarperCollins confirmed that it was the publisher Potash was referring to in a communication with LJ today.
LJ goes on to report libraries’ frustration with these new terms, which are not specific to OverDrive clients:
For librarians—many of whom are already frustrated with ebooks lending policies and user interface issues—further license restrictions seem to come at a particularly bad time, given strained budgets nationwide. It may also disproportionately affect libraries that set shorter loan periods for ebook circulation.
For more detail, check out the full LJ story. PW will follow up with a fuller report soon.