OA textbooks from college bookstores

Jeff Young, College Bookstores Hope to Turn Their Web Sites Into E-Book Portals, The Wired Campus, September 24, 2009.

College bookstores are taking steps to turn their Web sites into e-book portals, hoping to stay relevant as publishers make a push to electronic textbooks.

A project announced this week by bookstore associations in the United States and Canada will bring a library of downloadable e-books to participating stores. A few stores in Canada are experimenting with the system this fall, and some U.S. stores will try the system starting this spring.

… [T]he groups — the National Association of College Stores and the Canadian Campus Retail Associates Inc. — have pooled their resources to develop a shared system. Each store can integrate it into its own Web site, to let students buy and download an electronic text in just a few clicks …

So far the groups’ collection is tiny — just about 200 titles. … [T]his first set of books is free to students, either because the books are out of copyright or because the publishers have agreed to make them free for now.

Anyone can download the free books from participating stores …

Also see the NACS press release.