That’s the thrust of an article in the Coloradoan by Holly Carroll, executive director of the Poudre River Public Library District and Patrick Burns, dean of the Colorado State University Libraries. Here’s an excerpt:
The popularity of eBooks, eReaders and other digital media has grown exponentially in recent years. Unfortunately, current lending and publishing models for electronic content do not provide the same level of access to our library users as print models. One prevailing trend is for publishers to rent content to libraries and then re-charge for it every time it is loaned. This causes costs to rise, and with fixed annual budgets for collections, limits what libraries can offer. Additionally, libraries cannot then engage in sharing such content via inter-library loan, further limiting access. Another problem is that some electronic content is only available to the consumer and not available for libraries to purchase for loaning purposes. For example, individuals can purchase electronic books for their personal use on devices such as the Kindle and the iPad, but libraries are prohibited contractually by the publishers from purchasing titles for these devices and loaning them to patrons.
Thanks to Michael von Glahn for the link.