E-book subscription service to be introduced

2015-07-29 06:00

THE KwaZulu-Natal Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) is preparing to introduce an e-book subscription service across the province.

The electronic books will largely be made up of fiction and readable non-fiction for adults.

The service is currently being piloted at the Empangeni and Umhlali libraries, as well as among DAC employees.

The department believes this project will benefit pupils and teachers as they will have unlimited access to library material, promoting a culture of reading and improving learning as well as teaching.

Department head Sibongile Nzimande said the DAC believes the move will cement its support of existing libraries.

“We will embark on a provincial awareness campaign to educate communities about the service,” said Nzimande.

Interested residents will have to register to become library cardholders before being loaded onto the system as e-book readers. The Overdrive app for smartphones and tablets can also be downloaded from the Google Play Store for free.

Detailed steps for each device will be available at libraries, which have free Internet access. Internet connectivity will be required to access and download the e-books, but reading a book will be done offline.

Members have two weeks to read a borrowed book before it automatically returns to the list of available books on the service. The paperless service means there will be no need for overdue notices or fines.

“We are extremely proud of this initiative as it confirms that KZN is on the path to becoming a trademark information hub,” Nzimande said.

“The department is embracing technology as the future in speeding up service delivery and transformation - in this case it is being used to increase unlimited access to information, especially among our province’s youth.”

- Supplied


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