Speech by Mrs Elaine Ng, Chief Executive Officer, National Library Board at the "Enjoying A Digital Reading Lifestyle” Carnival on Friday, 1 July 2011, 6.30PM at The Centrepoint

Release Date : 01 Jul 2011

RADM(NS) Ronnie Tay,

Chief Executive Officer,

Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA)

Ladies and Gentlemen

1. Good evening, and welcome to the “Enjoying A Digital Reading Lifestyle” Carnival.

Collaboration with IDA

2. This year marks our second year of collaboration with IDA to promote reading and I am sure this will not be our last. Last year, both agencies co-organised READ! IT, Singapore's first-ever infocomm enabled reading event. At that event, we brought together reading events at six different venues through the live streaming of videos online, and received an encouraging response of over 800 website hits over the two-hour period of the event. This year, we are delighted to partner IDA again to promote digital reading as a lifestyle. At this point, I would like to express my heartfelt thanks to CEO, IDA and IDA colleagues for their support and partnership.

3. As digital technology becomes more integrated in our lifestyles and more people turn to online sources of reading materials, READ! Singapore, which is our national reading initiative to encourage Singaporeans to read, has also reinvented itself to extend our reach to more people. To encourage them to read more, NLB launched MobileRead, a free mobile application for reading stories, last week. Through MobileRead, people can read selected stories from past and present READ! Singapore campaigns such as Catherine Lim's “The Mother”, Louis Cha's “The Three Tests, and a slew of titles from well-loved authors such as Jane Austen, Mark Twain, Charles Dickens and Rudyard Kipling, amongst others. I am pleased to announce that since its launch, MobileRead has been downloaded more than 40,000 times. In fact, MobileRead was ranked among the top free apps on iPhone's App Store “Top 25” during the first three days after it was launched. Later, we will screen a video that demonstrates how you can use MobileRead.

4. Apart from MobileRead, NLB members can also download or read ebooks, journals, databases and newspapers from our website.

Appreciation and thanks

5. Finally, I would like to thank our partners and sponsors, especially IDA and Centrepoint, for their support and for making this event possible. We would also like to thank singer Stefanie Sun, our reading ambassador, for her support for MobileRead.

6. We hope that you will have an enjoyable time at this carnival, and for those who are not yet library members, please sign up at our NLB booth today to enjoy the benefits of reading and learning at our libraries.

7. Thank you.