It seems that publishers are pushing back on the many ways Amazon is now allowing users to borrow books. The Kindle Library Lending program is starting to take heat, and it could find itself in jeopardy soon.
Note:the Kindle Library Lending program and the Kindle Owners Lending Library are different beasts. In this post we are specifically talking about the program in which local library members can download Kindle books for a short time from libraries as if they checked out the paper book.
Penguin Publishing this week removed all of their books from the local library program citing security concerns. They were completely unclear as to what those “security” concerns were, but we can probably guess from the pushback these programs have received from publishers.
What publishers like Penguin (who may only be the first of many to pull out so it seems) are concerned about is this fact that there is the possibility that people could sign up for just about any library they wanted (in theory) and download whatever books they want without paying for them. So, it’s not so much abotu security as it is about the fear of loss of sales due to people using potential loopholes in the program.
Personally, I find Penguin’s position somewhat questionable. I understand the desire to prevent pirating of copyrighted material, but is taking books away from libraries the way to do that? I mean, we are talking about libraries – the place where all citizens are supposed to have access to knowledge. Surely the problem isn’t so rampant that publishers must ban libraries from the use of their materials altogether.
But hey, that’s my two cents, and I expect that we may see this trend continue, as publishers have many concerns as they face the brave new world of ebooks.