Friends of the Library: Wishes for the library in the new year

December 29, 2011|By Mary Ellen Goddard

Christmas is past, and the New Year is nearly here.

Looking ahead to the new year, and the years ahead, what do you want to see, have and be able to use at our Costa Mesa libraries?

Two things that I would like to see at both the Mesa Verde Library and the Costa Mesa Donald Dungan Library are study rooms for our students, which could also be used for tutoring, and separate rooms big enough for the children's storytime and other programs.


And that is just the short list. Let me know what you would like to see.

Write me at Friends of the Costa Mesa Libraries, 2969 Mesa Verde Drive East, Costa Mesa, C.A. 92626, or e-mail


Figuring out e-books

Did you get an electronic book device for Christmas, and now want to download some reading material?

A program from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the Costa Mesa Technology Library, (3033 South Bristol Ave., Suite Q, Costa Mesa) will show you how to download the free e-books from the Orange County Public Libraries website.

They will demonstrate how to download e-books on to the Kindle, Nook, Sony and iPad. Call (714) 754-4431 for more information.

Almost all academic libraries offer e-books, as do more than two-thirds of public libraries in the United States. For most libraries, including OCPL, e-books are only a small percentage of circulated items but represent the fastest-growing segment.

The Orange County Public Libraries are building up its list of e-books to be checked out by borrowers at all of its 33 branches. Various Friends of the Library groups have donated money for more e-books, and the Friends of the Costa Mesa Libraries probably will discuss if and how much we might donate to this project at our next meeting in early January.

I have to admit that I am no expert on this e-book business — I haven't yet even purchased a tablet or other device to read them. But having read a number of articles on the subject, I have come to see some of the problems that libraries in general will have to solve before they can offer e-books as widely as print books.

For instance, last March publisher HarperCollins announced that it would not allow its e-books to be checked out from a library more than 26 times, raising the possibility that e-books that are not repurchased would be available at the library for only about a year. Print books often are checked out more than a hundred times.

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