it is especially interesting because I have been so deeply involved in the second tier he describes coming out of Douglas County. I think his take on our work is fairly accurate and fair. He also does a great job of describing and assessing the situation moving forward.
What he does not mention is how piracy affects this entire arrangement. But that is because he is no more sure of what it will do to ebooks than anyone else. It is possible that piracy will do to ebooks what it did to music and open it up, but I would agree with his opinion in the post that you cannot extend the comparison between ebooks and emusic too far. It is very difficult to imagine what will happen with the commercial ebook tier in public libraries, but I can outline at least two of the possible outcomes: 1. Publishers will raise the license fees so high libraries will simply give up on commercial content. 2. Commercial content at libraries won't matter because it will become so ubiquitous on the net through legal or illegal means that it won't matter if libraries get the "elending rights under copyright law" Rosenblatt describes. There are other more positive possibilities that could arise as well, but they are contingent on a lot of variables falling into place. It is also possible that license fees may fall and settle into a more equitable model, in which case libraries will need to develop better delivery methods as patrons will eventually give up on the complicated ones we currently deploy.