Answered By: Digital Library Services Team
Last Updated: Oct 31, 2017     Views: 3

We buy eBooks from different publishers. Many of which impose restrictions on the use of their eBooks. 

We prefer to buy unlimited access to eBooks with no limits to the numbers of people who can access the eBook at one time. However, often this is not possible as some publishers don't offer this option; we then buy eBooks with a limit of three concurrent users or as a last resort, if that is all we are able to buy, with single user limits.

Most eBooks time out after 15 minutes of inactivity. This is to enable another reader to use one of the three concurrent user licences. If an eBook is downloaded, it uses one of the user licences up for 24 hours. So for popular eBooks, we deactivate the download function if possible.

Some eBook suppliers sell eBooks with a credit licence, rather than a concurrent user licence. We buy an eBook, and pay for a set number of uses of that eBook per year. If we use up more than the agreed number of uses in one year, we lose access unless we buy another copy of that eBook. We buy additional copies of popular eBooks. However, some publishers only sell eBooks with a 100 uses at one time and if they are in very high demand these credits are quickly used.

The Library tries to manage this, to make sure that you can access an eBook when you need it. At very busy times, you may find that you are unable to access an eBook. If this happens, try again in 15 minutes or so, as it will be likely that one of the copies will become available. If you have tried to access a book at various times over a 24 hour period and still have problems please contact the Library, giving the book details, so that we can investigate the issue.