E-books through Interlibrary Loan? Believe it!

Have you received a notification lately that your ILL item is available to download as an e-book? If so, you’re one of the early beneficiaries of a new service offered through ILL: Occam’s Reader! Developed, once again, by our friends at Texas Tech University in collaboration with the University of Hawaii at Manoa and the Greater Western Library Alliance, Occam’s Reader allows for the easy sharing of e-books between libraries.

Image used with permission from Occam’s Reader (http://occamsreader.org)

While many libraries have maintained the licensed right to share e-book content through ILL for years, the lack of a technical platform prevented full e-book loans until very recently. Sensing this long-unfulfilled need, a group of librarians and developers approached the problem with the mindset that “other things being equal, a simpler explanation is better than a more complex one” (What is Occam’s Reader?, slide 2). From this productive collaboration came Occam’s Reader, a secure method for requesting and transmitting secure and legal e-book loans from one library to another.

We’re pleased to say that our involvement with Occam’s Reader has allowed us to deliver 24 e-books to USC patrons. We hope to provide many more in the near future. If you’ve been a recipient, we’d love to have your feedback.

-Contributed by Amie Freeman