All Library branches will be closed and the Mobile Library will not make its regularly scheduled stops on Monday, May 29, for Memorial Day.

The Park Central, Republic, Strafford, and Willard branch libraries will not have phone service on Wednesday, May 24, due to maintentance. Please call (417) 882-0714 for assistance.

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Libraries and Publishers Face Challenges of E-Book Industry

Libraries are in the national news again, this time over their boycott of e-book orders from publisher HarperCollins.

For the record, the Springfield-Greene County Libraries have suspended new HarperCollins e-book orders, but continue to purchase its print books.

What happened? HarperCollins has decided that libraries purchasing its new e-book titles and licenses may check them out only 26 times before the license expires. At that point, the library has to purchase a new e-book/license.

That means at a checkout period of two weeks, that e-book could be used for about one year for a popular title; a year and a half for a three-week lending period.

HarperCollins says it believes the change balances the value that libraries get from its titles with the need to protect its authors and ensure a presence in public libraries and their communities. Execs arrived at 26 after considering several things including average lifespan of a book. The new policy doesn’t affect the 184 HarperCollins e-books already in the library’s collection. (Macmillan and Simon & Schuster, two of the big six publishers, still do not allow e-books to be circulated in libraries.)

We know that suspending e-book orders from HarperCollins will affect our e-book readers’ choices. The library is working to build its e-book collection, but must balance their cost with print book costs. The new policy would raise the district’s costs and increase staff time to monitor checkouts. Worse, e-book publishers charge libraries full price for each item – no volume price breaks as there are for print books.

We will continue to monitor the publisher’s policy and hope it presents a more workable business model in the future.
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Visitors researching historical collections will be able to streamline their work with a new film viewer and multi-media scanner.

The ST ViewScan digital film viewer/scanner and companion multi-media scanner was purchased through a $7,983 grant supported by the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the Missouri State Library. The library provided $2,662 in matching funds and housed it in the Library Center.

Onsite and remote are able to view enhanced digital live images on a PC screen. They can do enhanced cropping and masking. In addition, an article from a microfilmed newspaper can be integrated with information from a hard copy book, magazine, paper, a color slide or other formats such as film negatives.

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