Overdrive, a company that already provides eBooks and downloadable audio books to libraries, is announcing a video-on-demand service for libraries as well that will go live later this year at the New York Public Library and elsewhere. Libraries are already a great free source of books, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, etc -- with the digitization of libraries and resources like this, people won't have to go to a branch and check out items to make use of them anymore.
Why do you care? Combine this with AOL going live with some 14,000 TV shows, videos and movies from Warner Bros. -- all of which will be free to watch but include advertising -- and you can get a glimpse of the world we'll live in 20-50 years from now. People who produce creative content will still make money. But increasingly, the vast library of information -- books, music, movies, tv shows, magazines, newspaper articles and more -- will simply be...out there, available to anyone with an internet connection. The smart companies wil try and find ways to make money off all those eyeballs. The dumb ones will try and stuff the genie back into the bottle. (Hat tip to Alfredboy aka priv8pete for the link.)