Bet You Didn’t Know This!
by Sally Tornow, Library Director
Many of us at NMPL have worked in libraries our entire lives, so we tend to forget that people who haven’t, have no reason to know how some things work. This is just a little cheat sheet on why or how we do various things.
Q: Why you can’t renew that book, even if you haven’t finished it.
A: Someone else is waiting for it.
Q: Why can Axis360 and OneClick ebooks only be checked out by one person at a time (they’re digital, right? So, they should be accessible by multiple people at a time, right?)
A: Publishers aren’t that fond of libraries loaning ebooks – they would much rather you bought them. In my opinion, and I am only half kidding, they think all of you are tech savvy enough to steal that digital copy and disseminate it to all your friends for free. When we offer a book through those sources, we have paid a license fee for the digital right to the book. We are allowed one license per title, which is fair. We buy multiple copies of print books, so we should buy multiple copies of digital ones. However, we aren’t buying the book, we are buying the license to share the book and that license either lasts forever ($60+ per book) or one or two years ($26 per book). This is also the reason why the ebook collections are so small – $60+ per book is exorbitant and not many licenses can be purchased at that price.
Q: Why do we charge fines and what happens to that money?
A: In this case, libraries can be different from each other. We charge fines because we use that money to buy new material and count it as part of our operating budget. Many of you are so kind as to say that you look on paying your fines as a donation to the library, so be assured that the money is put to good use within the library.
Q: Some of you might not be New Milford residents, but you use NMPL as your library.
A: CT is a wonderful state that allows you to use your card in any public library, but unfortunately there are a few restrictions. While you can go to a library and check out anything, you cannot use another library’s databases or digital items, because the service from which we get these items requires that the use be limited to that library’s card holders. There are a few that the State Library purchases which are open to any CT library card holder, but most services don’t want libraries to share resources since they won’t make enough money.
If we missed any questions you might have, please feel free to ask! My email is firstname.lastname@example.org and since I was originally a Reference Librarian, I love to answer questions!