hoopla service ending May 31, 2024

After careful consideration, MCLS joins other libraries and library systems, including the Free Library of Philadelphia, in discontinuing the hoopla streaming service.

Why is Mercer County Library System (MCLS) discontinuing hoopla?

Although it is free for patrons to use, hoopla’s cost-per-circulation pricing model means MCLS gets charged a fee for every item that is checked out.  Because of this, to stay within budget we have had to restrict monthly and daily usage and remove the movie/television module of the hoopla service.

MCLS believes this pricing model and cost of hoopla makes it unsustainable and that our resources are better used for other, more popular, digital content such as OverDrive/Libby (eBooks, eAudiobooks, comics, magazines) and Kanopy (streaming movies and television).  These services allow MCLS to more easily control spending while still providing patrons with the digital materials they need and want.

Some numbers…

MCLS routinely evaluates our collections and services to make sure we are providing our patrons the best of both in the most cost-efficient manner possible.  We have found that:

  • Only 2.5% of our eligible cardholders use hoopla per month;
  • hoopla consumes approximately 1/3 of the library system’s budget for virtual branch resources and databases.

In contrast, 2 times the number of patrons use eLibraryNJ (Libby) per month and circulate 2.5 times the number of items per year as through hoopla, while costing a little over half as much.

I’m a hoopla user – what do I need to do?

If you need a list of the titles you’ve checked out through hoopla, you will need to either write down the titles or take a screenshot of the items in your hoopla history.  Because of New Jersey patron privacy laws, MCLS does not have access to this information.

Find your checkout history by going to the hoopla app; select “My hoopla”; select “History”; write down or take a screenshot of the information.

Where can I find eBooks and eAudiobooks?

eLibraryNJ – Borrow ebooks, audiobooks, comics, and magazines to read on your phone or tablet using the Libby app by OverDrive. You can even send and read your borrowed eBooks to your Kindle eReader (U.S. only)! It’s free and easy to get started for new users and a streamlined experience for current OverDrive app users.

What if eLibraryNJ doesn’t have what I want?

Use Notify Me to tell us about eBooks, eAudiobooks, and comics not in eLibraryNJ.  If the item is purchased, the system will place you on hold.

But holds lists can be so long on Libby!

By discontinuing hoopla, MCLS will be able to purchase additional titles on Libby to reduce wait time. Because we are part of the eLibraryNJ consortium, MCLS patrons may also borrow titles owned by other libraries/library systems in the consortium, further helping to meet demand.

Where can I stream movies and television?

Kanopy – Kanopy is a video-streaming platform dedicated to thoughtful and thought-provoking films. We are providing unlimited access to children’s titles and Kanopy Plus. Kanopy Plus includes British Cinema and TV, Episodic Titles, Kanopy Favorites, Easy Watching, Diversity, and World Cinema.

How can I watch Kanopy?

You can stream Kanopy on any of your favorite devices! Kanopy is accessible via mobile and tablet apps for iPhone and Android. You can also access Kanopy on your Desktop, and SmartTV apps like Roku, Apple TV, and Fire Stick.

How to create an account

  • To get started, visit https://www.kanopy.com/en/mcl and select the “Add Library Card” button on the lower left
  • Enter your library card credentials
  • Create an account using your preferred email
  • Begin streaming!

What other digital content does MCLS offer?

The Palace Project – Access the New Jersey State Library’s eBooks in one simple app. Enjoy thousands of free books from the Palace Bookshelf as well as exclusive titles only available to you in Palace. Download the Palace app for Android or Apple iOS today!

– Flipster is a next-generation digital magazine distribution service which lets users access their favorite magazines from a variety of publishers through their local libraries. Accessible via a web browser or custom apps made specifically for Apple devices, Android devices, and the Kindle Fire tablet, with Flipster users can download magazines to read offline, anytime, anywhere.

PressReader – Read the Newest Magazines & Newspapers

Tumble Book Library
– TumbleBookLibrary is an online collection of e-books for children. They are a great way to encourage tech-savvy kids to enjoy reading There are over 250 animated, talking picture books!

Local and National Newspapers – Trenton Times, Trentonian, The New York Times, and Wall Street Journal.