Printed books still in demand

Library circulation of print materials is down three per cent while downloads of audiobooks has almost doubled.

  • Nov. 27, 2012 11:00 a.m.

Traditional books aren’t being replaced by new technology.

Circulation of print materials is down three per cent within Okanagan Regional Library, while the download of audiobooks has almost doubled.

However, executive director Lesley Dieno says the agency still circulates three million print items a year.

“Lots of people, and especially teens, want print,” she said.

“They (teens) read computers and phones all day long and when they are ready for pleasure, they want print.”

There is also a growing demand within print materials for books with large type and languages other than English.

But many ORL patrons are embracing the latest in technology.

“So far this year, 83,000 ebooks have been downloaded,” said Dieno.

Other services are also proving popular. The number of downloads of music from the Freegal database is up 80 per cent and the collection of magazines from Zinio is being used at a high rate.

“But we are still circulating CDs. That hasn’t declined,” said Dieno. With increasing demands for reading material and music in various forms, financial pressures are being placed on ORL.

“We’re just adding things on, we’re not getting rid of anything,” said Dieno.“Libraries have to provide something of everything.”

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