It has come to this.
Developing a virtual and digital collection in a library is inevitable. The resurrected ebook sensation of 2010 swept the country with fear, doubt, anxiety and to tech savvy creatures and marketing mavens, excitement. It's a highway to big earnings for those who produce the technology but for librarians, it is another road towards change. And change must be managed before adopting and adapting the (not so new) ideas and paradigms. After all, the more things change, the more they remain the same.
Be careful. Be cautious. Be humble.
The rise of the ereaders and ebooks poses many challenges and considerations to the libraian: budget, technology, collection development policy, technology, and behavior and needs of information consumers and creators. Like in any initiative or project, administrative support is necessary for the project to fly. Consider continuous professional growth as well. Having said these, a librarian must assess and study his/her environment and the requirements of installing ereaders and providing an ebook collection in the library.
Below are library blogs that discuss the management, limitations, advantages and benefits of ebooks.
School Libraries, RIP? The debate begins... Mark Steed writes, The more I think about it, the more I find myself questioning why we are still spending money on books and on the School library.
Ebook Management for SchoolKerrie Smith provides a scenario of how schools manage their ebook collection from an Australian experience.
The Librarian In Black vents out -- I care about digital content in libraries. And I am about to lose my cool in a big way. No more patience, no more waiting for advocacy groups to do their work, and certainly no more trusting vendors to negotiate good deals for us with the publishers. I am angry, I am informed, and I am ready to fight. Read the fill article on the Library ebook Revolution
Meredith Farkas on Information Wants To Be Free, enjoys using her Kindle but expresses some concerns for ereaders and ebooks use in the library.
If there's one thing we need to do to start taming our own ebook issues, it is that we have to know how others have begun and then, examining our own library context, see how we can do it. Call it a feasibility study. Ebooks are cool. Ereaders are great. But the wise know better.