St. Charles, St. Louis libraries feeling financial crunch from e-book publishers

"We are spending $65 to re-buy an (e-book) title we bought two years ago."

Kevin Killeen
October 17, 2019 - 9:01 am
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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) — Local libraries are feeling the pinch from publishers, charging un-ending fees for access to popular lendable e-books.
 
In the old days, says Carol Schrey with the St. Charles City-County Library, a book bought by a library could be lent out forever.  

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"We are spending $65 to re-buy an (e-book) title we bought two years ago," Schrey tells KMOX's Kevin Killeen. "So, it's that constant cost over and over again."
 
Adding up to $60,000 this year for the St. Charles libraries. The same problem is also happening in St. Louis City, where Waller McGuire is the CEO of the Public Library.
 
He laments that publishers charge in different ways. "Everytime somebody reads it, sometimes you can buy one and [after] 10 reads, it goes back."  
 
Waller says the city library system is spending $150,000 a year now on rising costs for e-books.  

Libraries around the country are looking for a way to get publishers to ease up, but so far, there's no end in sight. 

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