Interessantes aus Informations- und Bibliothekswesen


Auch in Norwegen wird eifrig über DiViBib diskutiert. Thomas Brevik, Autor des norwegischen LibWorld-Beitrages, hat in seinem Blogg og bibliotek über Divibib geschrieben, deren prominenteste Dienstleistung hierzulande unter dem Namen Onleihe bekannt ist. Via Email hat er mir sein Posting zusammengefasst, woraus ich nun mit seiner Erlaubnis zitieren möchte:

The post is a response to some criticism I got from other librarians
in Norway for beeing to positive to DiViBib.

The Norwegian Library Bureau is starting a pilot project to introduce
DiViBib as the first e-book and e-content platform for public
libraries in Norway.

I argue that even with the severe problems that the DRM and lending
model represents, DiViBib is the first serious attempt at getting a
usable platform for dissemination of e-content into norwegian pujblic
libraries. And there is severe resistance to the whole “Lending of
digital files” concept among librarians, so I think that DiViBib may
be a good way to educate the “resisters” and just get some content out
there at all!

The other problem in Norway is the fundamental lack of e-books in
norwegian. The norwegian publishing industry has resisted publishing
e-books since the “great e-book flop” of 2001 and nothing has happened
since. Today the publishers are reluctant to get into any e-book model
in fear of loosing money, and most author organizations are reluctant
because they fear “filesharing” as a threat to their incomes.

I believe that with the increasing pressure against DRM the
possibility is that the DiViBib model will be changed over time, and
that since there is no realistic alternative in Norway, and that the
Library Bureau is the only entety that has any chance of persuading
the publishers to issue e-books in norwegian, I believe that DiViBib
is the best option at this time and that we should use it and try to
change it from the inside over time instead of resisting and have no

DiViBib ist also nicht nur hierzulande sehr umstritten. Die Debatte, ob DRM akzeptabel ist oder nicht, wird in Norwegen aufgrund der bisher sehr schlechten Verfügbarkeit von E-Books in norwegischer Sprache etwas anders bewertet, zumindest von ihm. Dies kann wohl generell als Problem kleinerer Sprachgemeinschaften betrachtet werden. Dienstleistungen, die sprachbasiert sind, sind generell schwieriger zu realisieren, je kleiner die Sprachgemeinschaft ist.

Ein Unterschied ist auch, dass die Dienstleistung von einem zentralen Bibliotheksbüro, der Biblioteksentralen, eingeführt wurde, während hierzulande einzelne Bibliotheken als Pioniere agieren.

Thomas Brevik legt Wert darauf, dass die Email ausschließlich seine persönliche Meinung wiedergibt und meint abschließend:

I would be very interested in the responses.

Dieser Beitrag wurde geschrieben am Freitag, 20. Juli 2007 und wurde abgelegt unter "Bibliothek". Du kannst die Kommentare verfolgen mit RSS 2.0. Kommentare und Pings sind zur Zeit geschlossen.

11 Kommentare

  1. CvK:

    I will try to answer in englich, for if Mr Brevik is reading that.

    it is of course more difficult to push ebooks in small languages, but I think the price is to high. With offering DRM data from public libraries you are pretending that DRM is okay. It’s like governmental DRM marketing, which is not okay.

    I would be interested, what the other librarians from Norway say, to who you answered.

  2. Thomas Brevik:

    I think that there are two reasons why I believe that the DiViBib solution is good enough.

    One is that the alternative is to wait even longer for e-books in norwegian. This is my main argument for DiViBib, and it is NOT an argument for DRM in general. If there where alterantives I believe that DiViBib would not be adopted by norwegian libraries. Once we have a reasonable number of e-books in norwegian, then there will be a push towards changing the lending model and the DRM-restrictions.

    The other is that even with the horrible DRM and loan model, library users will be better served than they are today. I believe that a majority of library users could not give a damn about DRM and would happily use this solution until something better comes along.

    The time of DRM will probably be fairly short and will only last until a better business model comes along that competes with the current DRM-regime. The DRM-less music in iTunes shows where things are moving, and the publishing industry will follow however reluctantly.

  3. slarti b.:

    Sorry, but I’m not the same opinion. I do’nt think that it is “good enough”. Good enough would be a solution that has no DRM and free media with it.

    I think libraries should more support projects like Open Library and make marketing for it with their patrons. Are there no free digitalized books in norwegian in something like Project Gutenberg? And the bad naxos cds are not worth any money. you can get them for few cent everywehre. support free content and you support your patrons. support drm and you support some companys!

    Sorry for my bad english. i ca’nt say better for what I want.

  4. Infobib / Divibib in different countries:

    [...] and Norway are heavily discussing DiViBibs new service. I just looked for blog postings from other [...]

  5. Thomas Brevik:

    DRM is a way to get reluctant publishers to try publishing e-books. When you have a market of e-books, then you can start competing on issues like DRM-free books. When you don’t have a e-book market, then the question of free and open media gets pretty pointless, and that is the situation in Norway.
    So I’m pragmatic enough to prefer some e-books with DRM to no e-books at all.

    And I believe that the general public dont give a s**t about DRM, otherwise you would not get the sales we have seen on iTunes music store and other places where they sell content with DRM. When DRM-free music comes people will probably prefer that, but the DRM locked music made the music industry start publishing music in the digital arena, and that is what I hope will happen in Norway.

  6. Helge Risvand:

    Hi, I work at Stavanger public library, one of the libraries which have been selected as pilot libraries.

    First of all, I disagree that the general public thinks DRM is okay. I think only a few are aware of the problem. If you have an iPod and buy music at iTunes, then everything works out fine. You don’t even notice the DRM. And the iPod market share in Norway is huge. And I’m scared when I look at the players in the market who push for DRM. It will take a lot of hard work to try to topple them…

    My main gripe with this project is the direct conversion of the loan model from the “physical” world to the online world. For me, the Internet is all about availability. If it isn’t readily available online, then it will seldom get used.

    I wholeheartedly agree with Thomas Brevik that the lack of e-books available in Norwegian is very worrying. I would love study books that I could do a full text search in. I do however find it questionable to work to my library’s patrons’ disadvantage to make sure that the big publishers can keep their position in the market.

  7. CH:

    Yes, I agree. I think we as librarians do have the responsibility to argue for our patron’s rights. We – as librarians – have enough power in the e-book market to refuse DRM and to force the publishers to develop better lending models. But when we accept DRM they will never change it.

    At the moment libraries are the only e-book customers of any relevance. So it’s up to us. When some publishers won’t give their contents for non-DRM systems it’s not our problem, it’s theirs. Other publishers will fill that gap.

  8. Thomas Brevik:

    Just a few comments to Helges comment:-)
    I do not think that the general public thinks DRM is okay. I just think that they don´t care very much. As long as things work they are happy, and when things don´t work they just go somewhere else, but today where is that? For e-books in norwegian, nowhere…

    The “physical loan model” is absolutely a problem, but then again, where is the alternative? I belive it will be a lot easier to introduce DiViBib and then work to change the system to a better model than try to make a model from scratch, which we must do today.

    Libraries in norway has little or no experience with e-books, and the introduction of DiViBib will get librarians exposed to e-books from a well known supplier and “trustworthy” intermediate between libraries and publishers.

    CH: In norway libraries have hitherto been unable to cooperate in such a way as to pressure publishers. In the larger markets like Germany it may be possible, but I personally doubt that publishers will feel any pressure. And I can assure you that in Norway there will be NO publishers that will “fill the gap”. Too small country, and a too rigid publishing system for that to happen.

    I feel that the “principled stand” against DRM in libraries is a valid one, but it is also one that will stop new and relevant e-books from beeing published in the forseeable future. So, if Helge or anybody else can point to a solution that will both satisfy the need for a platform that libraries will accept and that have interesting and updated content, and is DRM-free, then I will applaud and work in favor of that. Until then I am more in favor of working with what we have and to get e-books in norwegian into libraries as soon as possible!

  9. Karla Hartmann:

    German libraries are not working together, too. And that’s the point. No library director (i think in the whole world) is strong enough to say “no” to a publisher, especially in scientific libraries. This is no special thing to Norway, Thomas!

  10. Thomas Brevik:

    I suppose I´m not very surprised, but it is sad that our profession is helpless to manage our relationship to a business that has libraries as its main market.

  11. CH:

    Yes, most heads of library do not have the guts to say no to DRM media, but no, our profession is not helpless. Just see what they did at the library of the MIT: “MIT Faculty and Libraries Refuse DRM; SAE Digital Library Canceled”

    One could say that it’s easier when you are head of such a big and wellknown library. But I think it’s more difficult. So we could say: If they manage to do something like that, we can easily do to. For what do we have consortia?

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