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Why PPL supports net neutrality

posted: , by Sarah Campbell
tags: Director's Updates | Online Services | Adults | Business | Government

This afternoon, the FCC approved their Restoring Internet Freedom Order, overturning the Open Internet Order that established net neutrality protections within the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in 2015. PPL and the library field are strongly opposed to this decision.

Libraries rarely advocate on legal or regulatory actions, holding to our commitment to educate and inform rather than take sides. However, net neutrality principles are a core library value. Public libraries take seriously our mission to provide free and equitable information access to all members of the public as they seek to become more informed citizens and to improve the quality of their lives. Libraries strongly assert that equity of access to online information and services is critical to a healthy democracy.

As others have voiced, our concerns about the Restoring Internet Freedom Order center on whether internet service providers (ISPs) could control what and how internet content travels on their networks. This would make certain resources unavailable or slower to access for those who do not or cannot pay, and has the potential to infringe upon new online content from competitive entrepreneurs and creators looking to enter the market.

Public libraries like PPL are committed to bridge the digital divide – the social and economic inequality of access to the internet – by providing broadband, computers, and training for free and open use to our patrons, many of whom rely on the Library as a primary web access point.  We are therefore extremely concerned that, without net neutrality rules in place, such access will be substantially unprotected.

Inequity of access to content could also compromise our ability to provide the breadth of information needed to serve people with diverse needs and perspectives, as we do at all of our branches and online.

PPL joins our library colleagues around the country to stand with internet founders, content providers, business people, and many millions of others in asserting that net neutrality principles must be the standard held in our society, and rules must apply to reinforce their value. We are fortunate in Maine that Senators Collins and King, and Representative Pingree made clear statements prior to the FCC’s vote in favor of preserving the Open Internet Order.

At this point, there are two ways that you can engage in the future of net neutrality. First, keep yourself informed about the issues and actions taken. Second, as an informed consumer, participate in the discussion as it moves forward and learn more about your own internet access and speed.

You can count on PPL to continue to provide complete and balanced information, to be forward-looking, and to actively defend your freedom to information access and expression.


We Love cloudLibrary!

posted: , by Sarah Skawinski
tags: About the Library | Library Collections | Online Services | Adults | Teens | Kids & Families | Seniors

cloudLibrary, a brand new eBook and eAudiobook platform, is finally here! Library patrons at PPL and around our state are now able to download a wider range of eBooks and eAudiobooks on this new system, and we are excited to support you through the transition.

It’s official…PPL patrons love cloudLibrary! The app is very user-friendly and the content is incredible. Longer borrowing times and absolutely no late fees make it a win-win.

“I found myself at the dealership with a two hour wait and nothing to do. So I decided to download the cloudLibrary app on my iPhone and within minutes I was listening to Lily King’s Euphoria. It was so convenient and it completely saved my afternoon!”
-Rebecca S., PPL patron

cloudLibrary iconHave you downloaded the cloudLibrary app yet? All the information you need to get started can be found on our cloudLibrary help page, including helpful tips and tricks for navigating once you have downloaded the app.

And don’t forget that we are offering free pop-up help desks at all of our branch locations for anyone who would like some one-on-one tech help. We’d love to see you!

Main Library (in our New Fiction area, main floor)
Thurs., March 9, 10am-1pm
Fri., March 10, 10am-1pm
Sat., March 11, 1-4pm

Riverton
Wed., March 8, 10am-1pm
Thurs., March 9, 3-6pm
Sat., March 11, 10am-1pm

Burbank
Tues., March 7, 2-5pm
Fri., March 10, 2-5pm

Peaks Island
Tuesday, March 14


A new eBook platform is coming!

posted: , by Emily Levine
tags: About the Library | Online Services | Adults | Teens | Kids & Families | Seniors | News

On Wednesday, March 1, 2017, the Maine InfoNet Download Library will move to a brand new eBook and eAudiobook platform called cloudLibrary. This will replace the Overdrive platform.

We’re positive PPL patrons will enjoy the cloudLibrary platform. Its easy-to-use interface makes it simple to download titles, save reads for later, and even sync activity across multiple devices.

This transition will offer Maine readers a bigger selection of eBooks and eAudiobooks, including most of the digital titles already in our collection. As an additional benefit, the checkout period has been extended from 2 weeks to 3 weeks!

There is no cost to library users. All you need to get started is an active library card.

The cloudLibrary app is compatible with the following devices: iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Android Phones, Android Tablets, NOOK Tablets, NOOK eReaders, Kobo eReaders and Kindle Fires.

Amazon has declined to make the cloudLibrary app available through its proprietary app store. Please check these detailed instructions for using the Kindle Fire and the Kindle HD.

Getting started

The Maine State Library’s FAQ is very helpful resource, but here are answers to questions you may have:

  • Our current system, managed by Overdrive, will be turned off on Tuesday, February 28, 2017. CloudLibrary will be launched the very next day, Wednesday, March 1, 2017.
  • With this transition to cloudLibrary, the Download Library will continue to offer readers nearly all the current collection of over 10,000 digital titles, plus new titles and additional copies of popular titles.
  • Significant cost savings due to the change in platforms will allow us to purchase more content, reducing the wait times for popular titles.
  • Checkouts that exist in Overdrive on February 28 will not transfer to the new system. What exactly happens to an active checkout at the time of switchover will depend on a patron’s specific device and how it checks back (or doesn’t) to see if the item’s license is still valid in cloudLibrary.
  • Holds will not transfer to the new system. You should place a new hold in the cloudLibrary by downloading the app and logging in on March 1.
  • Patron requests to purchase a specific title will not transfer to the new system. You may want to place your new request in cloudLibrary on March 1.
  • Users of Kindle devices should be advised that the Kindle Fire (2nd generation or newer) works with the cloudLibrary, but e-ink Kindles do not.

The cloudLibrary support site has a downloadable cloudLibrary User Guide, provides how-to videos, and is a useful spot for other help topics. Of course, PPL’s staff is ready to help with any questions once we make the change. We are excited about the new platform and the expanded options it will provide for our patrons.

 

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