Thursday, March 24, 2011

On lending e-books

It's no secret I love my Kindle. If I could afford to only read on my Kindle, I would. When lending books for the Kindle became an option, I made a Google document with all of the books I owned that could be lent and shared it with all of my friends and family who also had Kindles. I liked the idea of sharing books, as I've never been one to hoard books I've read (books I have yet to read are a different story. My bookshelves tell a different story about me: the books I think I want to read someday but never seem to.) 

My Google document just got blown out of the water by ebookfling.
The concept is simple and similar to Paperback Swap: lend a book, get a credit. Borrow a book for a credit. I chose to manually list my Kindle books with them, but you can also import your library. I have several books I want to read soon (mostly the Orange Prize longlist), and I won't loan them until I've read them. Not all Kindle books are loanable of course, but when you add a book to your wishlist it shows up with "lending disabled" in red, which is helpful. You can browse for books currently available to be borrowed as well as keep a wishlist of items you want to be notified when they become available. The lending guidelines are still incredibly strict: you may lend a book only one time and only for fourteen days. Many publishers do not allow their e-books to be lent (thanks to Macmillan and Scholastic who do!).

There are other websites offering similar services (Lendle and Booklending are only for the Kindle). It will be interesting to see if one begins to dominate the market. 

How do you loan your e-books to friends?

I am not affiliated with ebookfling.com nor am I receiving compensation for this post. I think they provide a fantastic service.

11 comments:

  1. This is brilliant! I just got a Kindle, but have been nervous about how expensive reading can be on an e-reader. I'm a huge fan of PBS and this seems like the perfect solution. I'm so glad you shared this!

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  2. This is fantastic! I don't have an ereader, but my mom does, and she will be so thrilled. Thanks for sharing!

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  3. thanks for this info.

    I am with you, i would covert my printed book library to eBooks in a heartbeat if i could afford to. I am so much happier reading on my Kindle.

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  4. This is cool! While I have been hesitant to sign up for paperbackswap/bookmooch, I think this is just perfect! Thanks for posting about this.

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  5. Good to know - I am definitely passing this on to my boyfriend who has a kindle!

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  6. It is a shame that the lending conditions are so strict, but I can see why it is needed. Getting to read just one other book this way effectively halves the cost of each ebook. I hope you manage to find all the Oranges you need this way.

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  7. This is incredible! I didn't know about it, but am absolutely going to look into it. It's the main reason I don't buy too many books on my Nook (I use it for free B&N uploads and for e-galleys), because I can't lend them out. This is so cool!

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  8. Oh excellent. I found a different site but it wasn't very user friendly. This one looks better organised.

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  9. What a cool idea! I have a Sony Reader, which means I can't really do the whole lending thing (yet?), but I do think it's neat that people are starting to do more with it!

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  10. I love to lend my books which seems the only downside to e-readers. My Kindle is on its way so this post is very timely -thanks!

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  11. I have a Sony Reader, but knowing about sites like this makes me want to get a Kindle or Nook! Must resist temptation, LOL!

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Thank you for taking the time to comment. Happy reading!