Nooks and ebooks keep library busy

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By Nick VanderWall
Entirely East Lansing staff writer

The East Lansing Public Library has been giving its customers a chance to try out the Nook for two weeks ever since December.

Lauren Douglass, head of technology services at the library said, “We have six to eight Nooks that we let people rent out for two weeks, and the patrons have a choice between color Nooks and black-and-white Nooks. They have all the same titles on them, but the color Nooks have a few more children’s books with pictures on them.”

She said, “the only time that we have the Nooks are when we are waiting for a patron to pick them up.” The black-and-white Nooks have about 55 titles on them and the color Nooks have 70 to 80, Douglass said. They add 20-30 titles every three to four months, she said.

In the fall of 2011, Barnes and Noble of East Lansing approached the library saying that if it wanted to buy the Nooks and some titles for them, it had better do so then, and that is why the library has the Nook instead of the Kindle, she said. The library has not had any trouble with Amazon telling it not to buy titles for tablets like some other libraries have, she said.

The Friends of the Library organization gives the library money each year to buy print books, but saw how successful the tablets were and gave money for that, as well, she said.

“The average age that we see come in to check out a Nook are between 40 and 70 years old,” she said. There are people on campus who have their own tablets who have checked out E-books from the library, Douglass said.

East Lansing’s library has not seen an increase of memberships wanting to check out the Nooks, but there has been an increase in memberships from people coming into the library to check E-books out on their own tablets, she said.

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