Showing all posts tagged: ebooks

Australian authors to be compensated for ebook library loans

28 January 2023

After concerted lobbying by industry representative organisations, such as the Australian Society of Authors, Australian writers will now receive a payment when a library lends out an electronic version of their book.

Authors, illustrators, and editors will be compensated for e-book and audiobook library borrowings for the first time, in a move by the federal government to bring lenders’ rights into the 21st century. A $12.9 million expansion of the annual lending rights scheme over four years will be announced at Monday’s launch of the Albanese government’s national cultural policy.

Until now, authors were only compensated when a library user borrowed a physical copy of their book, as part of the Australian lending rights scheme, which was established in 1975.



Proposed new policy boosts funding for Australian arts sector

2 January 2023

Speaking at the annual Woodford Folk Festival that concluded yesterday, Australian federal arts minister Tony Burke announced a raft of initiatives to bolster the local arts sector. A proposed five-pillar policy includes an undertaking to increase recognition of the work of Indigenous creatives, and plans to introduce fairer remuneration rates for artists:

The minister promised to treat “artists as workers”, criticising the [previous] Coalition government for exclusions on jobkeeper wage subsidies and for the comments by the former prime minister Scott Morrison praising “tradies … building the stage” but not artists.

In addition, streaming services such as Netflix and Stan will be subject to quotas, ensuring they air more Australian made content. Also the Lending Right Schemes, which pays a royalty to authors when a library loans one of their books out, will be expanded to include ebooks.


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ASA pre-budget submission hopes to boost investment in Australian literature

2 February 2022

It’s incredible to believe that Federal Government investment in Australian literature has declined by forty percent in the last ten years. It is something the Australian Society of Authors (ASA) hopes to redress in a pre-budget submission to the Australian Treasury. Direct grants to authors, and an increase in public lending rights scheme, are two key areas of interest to the ASA:

  • Direct authors’ grants: the development of a Commonwealth Fellowships and Grants program which includes a focus on First Nations storytelling, designed to fuel the talent pipeline and build the creative economy of the future.
  • A 20% increase to the Federal Government’s Lending Rights Budget to fund the expansion of the public lending rights (PLR) and educational lending rights (ELR) schemes to include digital formats (ebooks and audiobooks), which would modernise the schemes and reflect the reality of library holdings.


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Australia’s lending rights scheme needs to recognise ebooks

6 December 2021

In Australia, when you borrow a print novel from a library, the author is eligible to receive a small payment, as a compensation for missed book sales. Surprisingly though, if you loan one of their titles through a library ebook service, such as Libby, writers are not recompensed. This is because Australia’s lending rights scheme does not – yet – recognise electronic books and audiobooks, despite – in some cases – an eighty percent increase in ebook lending in recent years. It is a situation Olivia Lanchester, CEO of the Australian Society of Authors, says needs to be rectified.

“If it only remains applicable to the print world, and libraries are increasingly reducing their print collection, then over time our fear is that the payments will go to fewer and fewer Australian authors,” Lanchester said. “We want it to be a broad-based scheme that really captures everyone whose books are being read via libraries.”


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