According to a Wall Street Journal report yesterday sourcing “people familiar with the matter,” Amazon, maker of the Kindle ereader, is currently in talks with publishers about a potential Netflix-like model for ebooks. Via the model subscribers could access a “digital-book library” of ebooks as part of a $79 annual Amazon Prime membership.
According to unnamed sources for the article, Amazon is planning to create an accessible catalog of “older titles” for the program, with a limit on the number of ebooks that members would be able to read each month using the service. Publishers are being offered a “substantial fee” to take part, according to sources, but whether any have signed on so far remains “unclear.”
“This is disturbing. So many publishers have been so narrow minded the last few years,” wrote Jessica Moyer.
“I am a big user of our downloadable audio and ebooks through our library,” wrote Heather Gibson Turiello. “It’s a free resource today. Why would I pay to access library books?”
As LJ reported in April, Amazon is planning to unveil ebook library lending functionality for the Kindle later this year to integrate with pre-existing OverDrive ebook library catalogs. The Kindle is currently the only major dedicated ereader without library lending capability.