Open letter to an ebook provider

Dear NetLibrary,

It’s not that I don’t appreciate having online access to a book that everyone in my cataloging class is going to be vying over this weekend. And it’s not that I don’t also appreciate the fact that you seem to have ditched the PDF format, a move for which I’m profoundly grateful, considering what a pain in the rear it was to load and resize a brand-new PDF for every single page of the books you make available.

However: why does my checkout have to expire in UNDER AN HOUR? Do you have any idea how annoying it is to keep logging back in over and over? Are you trying to make people avoid using your product whenever possible?

Also, I’m not a plagiarist, and I resent your apparent assumption that I can’t copy and paste text out of your browser without being one. If I really wanted to plagiarize, I’d still be able to transcribe word-for-word from the book, wouldn’t I? I’m not exactly thrilled about being unable to print out anything at all, either.

I don’t hate your product quite as much as I did when you were using PDFs, but I’m still not feeling any love. And I think you should fire whoever came up with the short-timeout thing.

[There. I feel better now…]

4 Responses to “Open letter to an ebook provider”

  1. Clancy says:

    Netlibrary is teh suck and has been for years. I wonder why they don’t seem to have any competitors?

  2. Amanda says:

    There’s also eBrary, which we subscribe to at Swarthmore — it’s a more user-friendly product, with some extra whistles and bells. It’s not perfect, but I’ve found it a good deal less sucky than NetLibrary. But it sounds like it’s not as widely known.

  3. brd says:

    alt Print Screen?

  4. Amanda says:

    It’s more the principle of the thing, really — they know we can Alt-PrintScreen, but they’re determined to remind us that we can’t copy anything.