Cory Doctorow is a writer and blogger (Boing Boing, Craphound) and a big open-source guy. He is very articulate on copyright issues; he talks about how too much emphasis on copyright protection might lead to the suppression of information and less sharing of ideas and creativity.
Anyway, his latest book is a YA title, Little Brother, which is kind of like a little brother to Orwell’s 1984. Like all his books, Doctorow has published this title simultaneously in print and as a free download. He feels that the people who will download his books are not taking away in any way from the sales of the printed material—two different user groups. Libraries, for example, are going to be interested in the hard copy. And Doctorow’s got his eye out for libraries who might like a printed copy; he’s offering to help people who liked the free download and want to donate some money to him to instead buy hard copies for teachers and librarians.
Well, we do have the printed book in our collection; but all this made me wonder, should we promote the free download as well? Should we put a link on the teen page? Does that fit in with our mission to provide access to materials? Do our teens use Overdrive? Would they like to know about this? What do you think? Leave a comment!
(And does anyone know of this type of venture with a children’s book?)