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    Location: Aberystwyth, Wales, United Kingdom

    I am the owner and managing director of Information Automation Limited (IAL), a company that specialises in research, consultancy and training for the information profession. We are particularly interested in all forms of electronic information resources (e-journals, e-books, etc) and I teach a course in electronic publishing at the Department of Information Studies in Aberystwyth. Drilling down still further(!), my interests centre on the quality and evaluation of electronic information, and in the thinking that underpins activities in library and information science.
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    Monday, May 14, 2007

    e-Books and ILL

    A new twist to e-books and an obvious advantage for the medium that has taken a surprisingly long time to surface is the use of e-books through interlibrary loans (ILL). MyiLibrary from Coutts has developed eBook Loans with the National Research Council's Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information (NRC-CISTI).
    With the click of a mouse, eBook Loans offer instant access to tens of thousands of electronic books from major scholarly publishers, including Elsevier, Taylor & Francis, Blackwell and Springer.

    Libraries in particular will benefit from the service by reducing the costs associated with processing interlibrary loans, as well as tracking, receiving and returning loaned material. In addition, publishers will benefit from a new channel to market for their content, which creates a new and previously untapped source of revenue, while users gain instant access to the eBook they require.

    Each loan costs US$25, payable online using a credit card, and users have access to the e-book for 30 days through a URL received in an e-mail immediately after payment has been received.

    There is no need to return a borrowed eBook because the link expires automatically, and there is no need to worry about lost or damaged books.
    At this time, there is no news of whether a UK-based ILL service is to become available, but there seems to be no reason not to borrow from the NRC-CISTI collection (apart from a dollar payment!)

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