The Updates Keep On Comin’…

As always, updates are plentiful in OverDrive land! The sun has officially set on the WMA and WMV formats, with a few exceptions.  It turns out that the deadline spurred a few audio publishers into action and we have a few WMA stragglers that will stick around for conversion to MP3 by mid-June.

There were some WMA titles with active holds and those patrons have received an e-mail notification that their hold will not be fulfilled. We will also be receiving a list of the WMA titles in our collection and will be checking for a supported format that we can purchase.

OverDrive Listen has also arrived.  Like OverDrive Read, OverDrive Listen allows patrons to listen to audiobooks directly in their browser, rather than downloading the files onto their device. You can also still bookmark, notate, and highlight as with downloaded files.  Find more information about this new format in the OverDrive help pages.

Starting June 1, there is more happening on the holds front as well. Patrons can now get a better idea of how long they’ll be waiting for requests. Rather than the total number of holds for a title, they will see a whole number ratio that represents the number of holds per copy.

And, finally, there’s more news about OverDrive’s new “Dyslexic font” option.  Starting on June 1, patrons will have the option to enable this font through their account settings on the OverDrive site itself.  This heavier-weighted font increases readability for patrons with dyslexia. The feature, when turned on, will work site-wide.

Jeff, South Park

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The Sun Goes Down on WMA and WMV

As you may remember, OverDrive previously announced their intention to retire the WMA (audio book) and WMV (downloadable video) formats from all OverDrive collections.  The good news is that despite this change almost all of our audio book collection will still be available in the MP3 format and many of our videos will continue to be available as streaming video.

The original drop dead date was set for early March.  However, OverDrive is still working to gain the permissions to convert as much of the remaining WMA and WMV content to MP3 and streaming video formats as possible.  As a result, WMA and WMV files will remain in our collection until May 2015, though no new titles will be available in these formats.

When the formats are retired there will be titles previously part of our collection that will still not be available in MP3 or streaming video format.  These titles will automatically be removed from our collection.  We will also remove the catalog records so they do not appear in our online catalog or Sierra.  OverDrive will update all related articles in the OverDrive Help section in time for the May 2015 change.

This change should not result in undue complications or frustrations for our patrons. The MP3 file format has much greater compatibility than WMA and our downloadable video collection was not well used. In fact, we’ve already seen a modest increase in OverDrive video check-outs since some titles became available to stream so it seems likely that the change’s impact will be positive overall.

Lisa – CLP



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