NC State University Libraries Value Statement for the Scholarly eBook Marketplace

As scholarly monographs shift from primarily print to electronic, the NC State University Libraries seeks to engage both the publishing and library communities in shaping the future of the scholarly ebook marketplace. We believe the following values can form the core of a mutually beneficial market for publishers and libraries that best serves the researchers and students at the heart of the scholarly communication cycle.

We value:


  • Clearly stated allowances for printing, copy/pasting, downloading, and saving of ebook content.
  • Clearly defined perpetual rights to purchased and/or subscribed content regardless of transfer to publishers.
  • Rights that accomodate ADA uses.
  • Licensing terms which do not limit fair use under US copyright law.
  • Alerts that new books have been added to existing collections.
  • Title lists that encompass and confirmed access/ownership of ebook collections.
  • Prompt notice when titles are withdrawn/removed from a purchased collection due to the provider losing the right to publish/vend.
  • Clearly stated DDA triggers that are measurable and reported consistently.
  • Clear up-front communication about what types of content are and are not part of a negotiated collection.
  • Ebooks which do not require installation of additional programs to read.
  • Platforms which do not require uses to create accounts to access content.
  • Support for reader privacy.

Strongly Preferred:

  • Usability across devices.
  • Consistency of content across the print and electronic formats.
  • For ebooks with chapters or sections, enabled printing and saving of whole chapter or section.
  • Quality full-level MARC bibliographic records that meet current cataloging standards and practice.
  • Support for interlibrary loans of ebook content or comparable ways to lend and borrow ebooks between libraries.
  • COUNTER compliant usage statistics.
  • Ability to migrate purchased content between platforms.
  • Ability to coordinate discovery with third-party services such as Serials Solutions and SFX.
  • Ability to incorporate ebook search, discovery, access and purchase into existing workflows (e.g., YBP).
  • Perpetual access rights to purchased content.
  • Flexible simultaneous users models.
  • Ebook available or publisher's entire output.


  • Non-proprietary formats.
  • Integration of corresponding supplementary material sometimes available in the print version (i.e. CDs, web access).
  • Simultaneous format availability of frontlist titles, or availability of ebooks before print.
  • Available as EPUB.
  • No DRM limits.
  • Content mining allowed/enabled.
  • Capacity for deep-linking for course reserves or peer-to-peer sharing.
  • Alumni access.

Terms of Negotiation:

  • Pricing models that are reasonable, flexible, and reflect the broad needs of the library market. Restricting ebook access to subscription-only, bundled database of "all or nothing" content is in direct conflict with reasonable, flexible pricing models.
  • Ebook backfile collections discounted if we already have print holdings.
  • Provision of and no-cost MARC records.