Libraries of all types have taken the plunge of lending ebook readers to their patrons, yet controversy remains. As far back as 2007, the Sparta, NJ, Public Library was one of the first to dip its toes into then unknown waters. The Library Journal survey showed that in the academic library, Kindle is the device of choice by a margin of 2 to 1. While a variety of libraries are testing the devices and services, many others are holding out, questioning the legal, ethical, practical, and economic factors. Many libraries have e-readers on hand to demonstrate how to download from their ebook collections or for other training purposes. There are just as many reasons not to offer e-readers, however. First is the cost. Devices aren't cheap, and they require peripherals, ongoing maintenance, and an assortment of content. Libraries must proceed with caution when loading licensed content onto devices.
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