Freading will offer 20,000 copyrighted titles from 16 publishers with a mix of frontlist and backlist titles, the company said today at the American Library Association’s annual conference in New Orleans. The publishers that have signed on include Sterling Publishing, Sourcebooks, Andrews McMeel, and Regnery Publishing. Library Ideas cofounder Brian Downing says he’s hopeful a major publisher will join as well.
“The reason why we came into the ebook space is not only because it’s the next big thing, but we saw some real challenges with the existing models up and down the supply chain,” Downing said, adding that the company was positioning the new service as a supplement, not a replacement, for existing services.
The Freading service will offer library patrons unlimited, simultaneous access to the available titles. There’s no access fee for libraries (although there’s a $150 setup fee for first-time customers of Library Ideas), and libraries budget a given amount for access to the collection.
via ALA Annual 2011: New Ebook Service Launched, Takes Its Inspiration from Freegal | Library Journal