For immediate release | April 23, 2014

ALA President applauds creation of 'Right to E-read' campaign

WASHINGTON, D.C.—Today, the European Bureau of Library, Information and Documentation Associations (EBLIDA) launched the “Right to E-read” campaign, a new initiative that enables libraries to advocate for library e-books. In response, Barbara Stripling, president of the American Library Association (ALA), today congratulated EBLIDA for developing the ebook advocacy campaign:

"We understand that many libraries in European countries have faced challenges in obtaining and lending best-selling ebooks from major book publishers. In fact, surveys suggest that more than 50 percent of the latest ebook titles are not available to public libraries in Europe. Today, we applaud EBLIDA for demanding that the European Commission change copyright law to require publishers to sell to libraries.

"The “ebook” problem is all too familiar to ALA and U.S. libraries, so we empathize with our European colleagues. Our approach to getting more ebooks in U.S. libraries involved engaging in direct discussions with publishers, in addition to demonstrating that library e-book lending enhances overall ebook sales. Through many means of connecting authors and readers, libraries help the public discover and enjoy books from the broad range of authors.

"While we’ve made great progress in the U.S., there is still much work to be done. Like EBLIDA, we call for better licensing terms and reasonable prices as our work continues. Currently, International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA)

is working with all of the major library associations on an eLending position paper that includes an update on the current ebook status in various countries. We continue to work on ways to develop reasonable and fair ebook pricing models."

About the American Library Association

The American Library Association is the oldest and largest library association in the world, with approximately 57,000 members in academic, public, school, government, and special libraries. The mission of the American Library Association is to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.


Jazzy Wright

Press Officer

Washington Office