In June the Head of Operations North at the British Library asked for your views on the following proposed improvements to PLR:
1. To incorporate remote ebook loans from public libraries into the PLR scheme
2. To extend the number of libraries included in the PLR sample
3. To explore options for automating registration of authors’ books
4. To upgrade the infrastructure of PLR to make it easier to use and more efficient
Note: In order to deliver the above, the British Library intends to replace the PLR IT system and to relocate the PLR office from Stockton-on-Tees to its main Yorkshire site at Boston Spa.
In total c25k emails were sent out and we received 180 responses (0.7%) from a range of stakeholders.
What did you say?
• 82% of you support the suggested improvements
• 4% oppose the plans on the grounds of the relocation of the current PLR office and the effect of that on staff welfare
You also suggested the following additional improvements:
• Updating and simplifying the PLR web pages
• Investigating the inclusion of self-published books
• Exploring the inclusion of community run libraries into the PLR scheme
• Setting up closer links with ALCS
Some of the proposed improvements are underway and some have been noted for future development:
• Remote loans of ebooks was approved within the Digital Economy Act changes and accordingly, changes to the PLR Statutory Instrument are now in a period of consultation. Ebook titles can continue to be registered. The aim is to include the figures for remote ebook loans within the PLR data from 1 July 2018. As PLR payments are made in arrears the first payments will be made in January 2020.
• PLR now has a new website. It includes additional features including a video and case studies of different PLR users.
• Assuming the consultation is successful, author verification for the registration of titles is to be simplified in line with government guidelines.
• Extending the library sample to include a larger number of libraries is under consideration.