As someone who uses his local library to read comics a lot – Multnomah County Library System, I love you – this is relevant to my interests:
At a time when some publishers have refused to allow libraries to lend their e-book titles under the old business model, the digital comics distributor iVerse is breaking new ground with a service that will allow libraries to offer digital comics to their patrons to read on just about every digital device. Current plans, which are tentative, call for the service to launch at San Diego Comic-Con International in July, according to iVerse account director Josh Elder.
Publishers already involved with the scheme, which will be called Comics Plus: Library Edition, include Marvel, IDW, Top Cow, Zenescope, Boom! and, of course, Archie, the most forward-thinking of digital publishers, with more publishers apparently in negotiations. Excitingly, it’s expected to be popular with “the kids”:
While the service will be available to all the library’s patrons, Elder predicts that the typical user will be between 8 and 12 years old, with a 60-40 split between boys and girls. “Just as library graphic novel usage is dominated by YA titles, manga titles aimed at a YA audience, and children’s titles, we expect that will be our core audience as well,” Elder said. “Our goal is to reach everyone who is reading graphic novels in libraries.”
I am definitely looking forward to this launching. Hey kids: Digital comics. For free. Legally.