Posted: Dec 10, 2010 4:24 PM by Marnee Banks (Helena)
Updated: Dec 11, 2010 12:02 PM
The Montana State Library is responding to a demand for a new technology, as the popularity of electronic books (e-books) has exploded into a nearly $1-billion industry.
E-books are books that are read on an electronic device, such as a computer, e-book reader, or smartphone. You can buy them, download them, read them, and now you can also check them out at the library.
Karla Ritten of the Lewis & Clark Library in Helena noted, "We are seeing a tremendous growth in this usage, which is why we have expanded it and I think it is the convenience of you don't have to come to the library."
The library has had e-books for some time now, but the collection was small. Recently the staff decided it was time to expand, so not only have they added 500 e-books, they have also added over 3,000 audiobooks.
Ritten explained, "Since it's downloadable you don't have all the issues with CD scratching, tapes breaking. It is a nice way of getting a huge collection that doesn't get damaged."
All you need to take advantage of the new offerings are your library card and your library password. You simply log-on to the Montana Library2Go website and start checking out books. When the book is due back, the download will stop working and you can log back on to renew it. Best of all: no late fees.
Ritten added, "You can sit at your home and browse through massive collections, you can put holds on (items), you can immediately check out items."
Ritten says despite the ease and convenience of the new technology, some folks will always love the tactile feeling of curling up with a good book and a cup of coffee.
The e-book selection in the catalog work with Sony Readers and Nooks; Ritten says soon the library will eventually have books available for smart phones and i-Pads, too.