Monday, April 02, 2007

Metro can't please everyone

You know sometimes libraries can't win for losing. Metro has gone with overdrive to provide e-books to their patrons. Well one patron isn't too happy with the MS proprietary format.

...Well, a major upgrade has been done recently and I was excited to see that with an Oklahoma library card you can download audiobooks.

I jumped right in and pulled up my account, "pretty slick", I thought. I checked out my first book and hit the download button. I figured there would be absolutely no problem with the file. They show my exact iPod on the side bar.. Take time and look at the photo with the caption next to it saying, "Supported Portable Audio Devices". I didn't click that link, it clearly showed the exact iPod that I have.

Long story short, iPods are not supported, neither is an Apple computer. Why? Well, it looks like the library systems across our country are using proprietary Microsoft formats. Isn't that a kick in the pants. Oh well, I can still check them out and move the higher quality file to my iPod...

Unfortunately it's not as simple as blaming the "library systems across" the country only using MS formats. A large part of it is what's available for libraries to buy at a reasonable price and still able to serve a significant number of the public. And like it or not Microsoft is a popular platform.

What I would suggest is for people to contact their libraries when a new service is offered that they can't fully utilize. Unless libraries receive feedback -- there's no opportunity for them to know what is or isn't working.


Rex Barrett said...

I saw a click through from your post and came to your blog. I am the guy from the post and I agree that I need to communicate with Metro about this issue. I sure would like to fully use the benefits that are out there, I am carrying my tax burden and would like equal access from my Mac.

I was actually pretty surprised when I reviewed my tax statement how much I have put into the public library system. That is honestly why I have really made it a point to use the library more often. It has sure saved me money!

Now I wish I could get my wife to make the switch from owning a book to borrowing a book!

Laura said...

I'm a lifelong user of the Metro system, so I was so excited when I learned about the new service. I went to their website to check it out, and I was disappointed. I felt like the title selection was a bit musty, and I had to laugh that they have a picture of an iPod to promote the service when that is not one of the "supported" devices. I agree with Adri that I should let the library know - especially about their false advertising! :)