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Sharing Visions


Wednesday November 10, 2021 - Moving Digital Lending Forward (all times Eastern Standard Time)

9:30 - 9:35 AM - Opening Remarks
9:35 - 10:35 AM - Session 1:
     Library Digital Content: There’s Something Happening Here
     Presented by Michael Blackwell and Micah May
10:35 - 10:45 AM - Break
10:45 - 11:45 AM - Session 2:
     Empowering Libraries Through Controlled Digital Lending
     Presented by Chris Freeland
11:45 AM - Closing Remarks

For complete details and to access presenter resources and recordings, please scroll to the Description section below and open the appropriate session tab. Resources are also available on the Resources page.


The Sharing Visions team presented brief opening remarks.

Library Digital Content: There’s Something Happening Here

The period of 2018 to 2021 has brought many changes in licensing, platforms, and even the legal landscape in library ebooks and audiobooks. Join DPLA’s Director of Ebook Services Micah May and ALA Core Ebook Interest Group chair Michael Blackwell for an up-to-the-minute discussion of the new Palace app, DPLA’s multiple licensing models, Maryland’s Ebook Law and statement of reasonable models, other legislative efforts including Connecticut’s, and possible forms of advocacy.

                            Michael Blackwell (Director, St. Mary’s County Library; Chair, ALA CORE Ebooks Interest Group;  member of the ALA CORE Joint Digital Content Working Group; project manager for the ReadersFirst Working Group) has been an advocate for a better library digital content experience for over a decade.  He has frequently presented and published on digital content platforms and the availability and licensing of titles.

Micah May serves as Director of Ebook Services for the Digital Public Library of America and leads the DPLA Exchange / Palace Marketplace, DPLA’s marketplace for library eBooks and audiobooks, the Palace Bookshelf, DPLA's collection of free eBooks, and DPLA’s other eBook related services including our publishing experiments such as the Mueller Report and Impeachment Papers.   Before joining DPLA Micah was Director of Strategy and then Sr Dir of Business Development & Innovation at the New York Public Library, were he built capacity for innovation and led many groundbreaking projects including the creation of the NYPL Labs, Open Ebooks, the MyLibraryNYC partnership with NYC schools and the open source SimplyE reading app.  Micah started his career as a consultant at McKinsey & Co. and has a BA from the University of Colorado Boulder and a J.D. from Harvard Law.  

Empowering Libraries Through Controlled Digital Lending

Libraries play a crucial societal role in providing access to information and preserving that information over time. Unfortunately that role is under threat from a number of sources: budget reductions, exorbitant licensing fees, and the inability for libraries to own (not lease) digital content. In this session, Chris Freeland, Director of the Open Libraries program at the Internet Archive, will cover how existing library practices like interlibrary loan & controlled digital lending empower libraries to reach their patrons where they're learning—online—and the new efforts helping libraries take control of their digital futures.

Chris Freeland is the Director of Open Libraries at the Internet Archive, working in support of the organization's mission to provide "Universal access to all knowledge." Before joining the Internet Archive Chris was an Associate University Librarian at Washington University in St. Louis, managing Washington University Libraries' digital initiatives and related services. He holds an M.S. in Biological Sciences from Eastern Illinois University and an M.S. in Library and Information Science from University of Missouri-Columbia. His research explores the intersections of science and technology in a cultural heritage context, having published and presented on a variety of topics relating to the use of new media and emerging technologies in libraries and museums.

The Sharing Visions team presented brief closing remarks.