Answered By: Missy Williams
Last Updated: Oct 03, 2022     Views: 138


OverDrive loan periods are set to 14 days due to high demand of popular titles in order to fill the holds requests faster.  If there are no holds on an item, the item can be renewed a couple of times, so the loan period can be extended.

Publishers often charge 3-4 times as much for an eBook copy as they do for a paper copy.  Like a paper book, Delaware Libraries buys a copy for every simultaneous use we want for a title.  In addition to the higher price, many eBooks are limited in the number of times they can circulate. 

For example, we might pay $70 for a copy of the newest David Baldacci book, but after that book circulates 26 times, we will have to re-pay $70 for it to circulate 26 more times.  With a popular author like Baldacci, we may buy 20-40 copies to meet demand, and continuously re-buy to keep the lines moving. 

This pricing model means we can't buy as many copies to meet demand as we would for paper books.  That is why the check out period for Overdrive eBooks is shortened.


Libraries are constantly negotiating with publishers for a better pricing model, but publishers often feel free circulation of their material through libraries costs them more sales in eBooks than print books.  Pricing models constantly change and are different from publisher to publisher as they experiment with new ways of doing business.  


To access more digital content, Delaware Libraries offers hoopla as a supplement to OverDrive.  You can access hoopla from a web browser or mobile app. They have eBooks, eAudiobooks, graphic novels, music and movies to check out.  The items in hoopla are often older, but still contains many popular authors and has a large collection of titles.  These selections are always in (no hold times) and have a three week check out.  We pay hoopla only when an item is checked out, though for budgeting reasons we limit patrons to 4 borrows each month. 


Libraries have allocated approximately 20% of their acquisitions budget on eMaterials every year. We will continue to spend more each year to meet demand and work with publishers to find better pricing models. 



Provided by Kevin Swed, Manager, Appoquinimink Community Library

Delaware Libraries Consortium