عنوان مقاله [English]
Purpose: With the many problems that public libraries face, using e-books is nowadays an inevitable necessity. The present research aimed to measure the capability of public libraries to deploy e-books for 7-14 year olds.
Design/Methodology/Approach: This research was carried out in 2009 and librarians working in public libraries of Fars Province participated. Since the research population was geographically scattered, a questionnaire was used as the data collection tool. The research used a descriptive method and frequency distribution tables.
Findings: The findings of the research show that from a total of 123 libraries studied, only 24 (19.9 percent) have e-books in their collections. These libraries have purchased 85.5 percent of their e-books and 14.5 percent of the e-books have been donated to them. A majority (67.4 percent) of the e-books available in the libraries studied are reference books, among which dictionaries and atlases were the most common. Most (97.2 percent) of the libraries loan their e-books and only 2.8 percent of the librarians believe that their e-books must only be used inside libraries. Among the priorities presented for selecting children's e-books, having proper content has the highest point (2.9 out of 3). In contrast to the viewpoint of authors such as Londoni who believe that e-books will lead to the dissolution of libraries and will change the role of librarians, the participants in this research believe that e-books will reinforce public libraries and the role of librarians will be highlighted. Running courses that familiarize librarians with e-book technology and obtaining the facilities required for using such resources are among the factors that can encourage children to use libraries more often.
Conclusion: From the viewpoint of librarians, e-books will become more widespread in the future, but they cannot substitute for print books completely. They also believe that e-books and the facilities required for using them will change the role of librarians; however, they are not displeased with this change.