Why can’t libraries lend ebooks? European-wide petition calls for change

(23 April 2014) As World Book Night returns for its annual celebration of books and reading on 23 April, the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) and European counterparts EBLIDA have announced a European-wide petition calling for changes to copyright law so public libraries have the same right to lend eBooks as they do printed books.

Current European copyright law means that publishers do not need to license libraries to lend eBooks and 85 percent of all eBook titles are not available through UK public libraries. However eBook sales comprised almost a third of the total UK book market in 2013 and recent research published by Shelf Free shows that of the 50 most borrowed print books from libraries in February 2014, 45 have been published in eBook format but only 3 of these have been made available to libraries.

Read the announcement here.