In a letter to OverDrive CEO Steve Potash, the ReadersFirst coalition of libraries has protested a change that would require new users of OverDrive’s app to register accounts directly with OverDrive.
Stressing that “libraries, not the vendors we pay,” should own the customer relationship, the letter expresses “concern with the storage of private patron information” and posits that establishing the OverDrive account is not necessary and is "essentially a marketing opportunity" that could "erode the relationship that the library has with our patrons."
The letter comes in response to an email from OverDrive to library partners announcing changes coming to the OverDrive mobile app. While the good news is that the app would no longer require users to register for an Adobe ID (to navigate the DRM), new users would have to register for an OverDrive account.
In an email to members Monday, Jim Loter, director of Information Technology at the Seattle Public Library said the “ReadersFirst Leadership Group felt strongly that this change to OverDrive’s terms of service was a step in the wrong direction,” that might serve to “further cement the relationship of our patrons with OverDrive’s branded service instead of their local library.”
Loter added that Potash acknowledged the concerns expressed by ReadersFirst and that “he will respond to our message.”