LJNDawson.com, Consulting to the Book Publishing Industry
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Overdrive/Sony in Library Deal

This is one of those developments that's kind of low-key and insidery, but ultimately has a big impact.

Sony and Overdrive have announced a cross-marketing effort. This is big news because Overdrive supplies ebooks to libraries. Users can download Sony Reader ebooks from library websites. The books "expire" after a few weeks - this is a fantastic service for readers of genre fiction, particularly. You don't necessarily want to own every single book you read.

I know that many libraries have already been doing this - my impression from the press release is that new marketing initiatives consist of:

  • Reminding visitors to both websites that this service exists, and providing a search box to locate their library
  • Training librarians to help patrons with the Sony Reader
  • Doing marketing within the Sony Style stores to raise in-store awareness about this service
It's a great idea - for all the complaints about Amazon raiding users' Kindles to "take back" books they never should have sold in the first place, it may be that those who are not interested in perpetual ownership of books come to see ebooks as a way of reading quickly and disposably - and begin using their libraries more often.
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