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Follett Digital Resources Signs Five More Publishers To eBook Distribution Agreements

February 04, 2010 - McHENRY, Ill.

Follett Digital Resources, a member of the Follett Corporation family of companies, today announced that five additional publishers have signed major eBook distribution agreements with the company.

With these agreements, a total of more than 62,000 K-12 and public library titles are now available for purchase online through parent company Follett’s popular ecommerce sites, Titlewave™ and TitleTales™.

Here is a closer look at the five publishers that have recently signed eBook distribution agreements:

  • Universum Communications, Philadelphia. Through its Insider Guide series and two websites (www.wetfeet.com and www.internshipprograms.com), Universum provides profiles of companies, careers and industries to guide job seekers toward finding the right career, industry, company and job.
  • ipicturebooks, New York and Brick Tower Press, New York. Both ipicturebooks and Brick Tower Press are book packagers with licensed digital books from Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, Dutton, Scholastic and Reader’s Digest.
  • Phoenix Books & Audio, Beverly Hills, Calif. Phoenix Books & Audio is one of the nation’s leading producers of books and audio books, with everything ranging from mystery and suspense to self-motivation and autobiographies to fiction and non-fiction.
  • Lobster Press, Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Lobster Press is an award-winning Canadian publisher of quality children’s publications.

The addition of titles from these five publishers makes Follett’s eBook program even more valuable to the more than 60,000 K-12 schools and libraries Follett serves. Follett now offers eBook titles from more than 300 publishers that are easily accessible at any hour using a computer and an Internet connection.

“For many years, school libraries have acquired Lobster Press titles through Follett, whether they were interested in our original hardcover or paperback editions, or the Follett Bound editions,” said Stephanie Hindley, director of sales and marketing for Lobster Press. “We are thrilled to have this new, innovative way to reach educators, through the additional format of Follett eBooks. The user-interface looks great, and the concept of having our books used with interactive whiteboards in the classroom is very exciting. We also love how the platform puts author websites, teachers’ guides, and other bonus material right at the customers’ fingertips.”

The Follett Digital Resources eBook distribution system uses five key pieces of technology to deliver eBooks:

  1. Virtual Warehousing — Technology that holds eBooks at the ready until sold to a Follett school or library customer.
  2. Preview — Functionality that allows buyers and patrons to preview pages of an eBook prior to purchase.
  3. Digital Rights Management — Ensures intellectual property is protected as eBooks are distributed and viewed.
  4. Virtual Shelves — A virtual space for each institution’s purchased Follett eBooks where they are poised for checkout and reading by school and library patrons.
  5. Follett Digital Readers — eBook readers for viewing and interacting with eBooks online and offline once they have been purchased by a Follett school or public library customer and opened or downloaded by a library patron.

When a school or library buys an eBook title from Follett, the title is moved to a virtual shelf where it resides until a school or library patron checks it out. Digital rights management technology ensures that once a title is checked out by one person, it can’t be checked out by anyone else until it has been returned to the virtual shelf. Where possible, the eBook distribution system is tightly connected with leading integrated library systems (ILS), such as Follett Software Company’s Destiny® Library Manager™, allowing searching, accessing and returning eBooks to become part of the library’s standard circulation process.

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