Get LISNews via email! Enter Your Email Address:
From the New York Times article entitled "Of Bugs and Books", author Ann Patchett (State of Wonder) speaks about books, ebooks, bookstores, best-sellers, reading habits, author appearances, cicadas (the bug part) and so on:
"Everything cycles back around. Things I didn’t think could ever make a comeback — Newt Gingrich and platform shoes — proved capable of startling resurgence. Now when someone tells me a trend is dead, I think, no, probably just dormant.
Take bookstores, for example. With the demise of the Borders chain and the shaky footing of Barnes and Noble, one might be tempted to write off the whole business. But as one who spent her summer on a book tour, I would like to offer this firsthand report from the front lines: Americans are still reading books. Night after night after night I showed up in a different bookstore and people were there with their hardbacks. Sure, I signed a couple of iPad covers, Kindle covers. I’ve got no problem with that. But just because some people like their e-readers doesn’t mean we should sweep all the remaining paperbacks in a pile and strike a match. Maybe bookstores are no longer 30,000 square feet, but they are selling books. "
Patchett and her business partner, Karen Hayes, and will open the doors to Parnassus Books in her hometown of Nashville in October.
Are books dead, and can authors survive?
At the Edinburgh international book festival this weekend, Ewan Morrison set out his bleak vision of a publishing industry in terminal decline. Here's a shortened version of his argument
In the film versions of “Pride and Prejudice” the music jumps and swells at all the right moments, heightening the tension and romance of that classic Jane Austen novel.
Will it do the same in the e-book edition?
Booktrack, a start-up in New York, is planning to release e-books with soundtracks that play throughout the books, an experimental technology that its founders hope will change the way many novels are read.
Self-published author John Locke has just signed a deal with a major publisher. In June this year, the American writer of contemporary crime became the first author to sell a million copies on Kindle.
While the publisher, Simon & Schuster, will handle sales and distribution for Locke’s books, they won’t cash in on his digital sales.
Locke – who sold his digital books via Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing platform – is responsible for the popular Donovan Creed novels.
Commentary by Mike Shatzkin on this story: John Locke and S&S show us another kind of deal we can expect to see again
The "Perspectives" department in the July/August 2011 issue of Public Libraries features op-ed essays on the HarperCollins/OverDrive controversy by Kate Sheehan, Anne Silvers Lee, A. Paula Wilson, Brett Bonfield, and Kristin Whitehair. None of the essays are featured (that is, available for free) on the PLA website, but Bonfield's piece, "Getting Paid," carries a CC0 license and is available for free on Scribd.
Are there any other ALA-published articles that now carry CC0 licenses? How much longer until the next one appears?
Why Print Can Exist in Harmony with Digital
Since digital publishing has exploded in popularity, the dialogue over print media and its existence has been an intense one. For centuries the printed page has been heralded as the keeper and communicator of knowledge. It was an incredibly efficient means of disseminating information quickly and relatively cheaply. But then the digital age came along and now there is a new contender in the battle. And for a while we’ve seen the nature of this debate between print and digital focus on how print can deliver content differently and better than its digital counterpart. Instead of going down that path, we’d like discuss a rarely raised argument for print, from a designer’s perspective.
The printed book is doomed: here's why
By Shane Richmond, Head of Technology (Editorial)
A couple of weeks ago I spoke to a senior executive from a big Silicon Valley company. We talked about digital media and in passing he mentioned digital books. “I doubt that my daughter will ever buy a physical book,” he said. His daughter is nine.
Story at Teleread: http://bit.ly/n6HCJ2
They have a link to an article at Forbes and a link to the advisory opinion and some discussion.
Why Did Facebook Buy an e-Book Publisher?
Facebook announced Tuesday that it was acquiring Push Pop Press, an interactive digital e-book publisher, although Facebook said it did not plan to enter the book industry.
Using the Cube To Bring Back the Book
A nonprofit group is planning to build custom-designed portable reading rooms in New York and Boston starting this fall, provided they can meet a fundraising goal by August. 15.
The Uni Project, a brainchild of Street Lab, aims to create "an institution in a box" that will complement the work of libraries and community centers. The lightweight modular structure will bring books and various programs to public spaces and underserved neighborhoods.
On its website, the group explains that it wants to provide librarians and others with a new way to showcase what they offer by using a more flexible and less expensive institutional framework.
"And the best part, once we fabricate this lightweight infrastructure, we can keep it running, serve multiple locations, and even replicate it," said Leslie Davol, who is a co-director of the project along with Sam Davol.
Full article: http://bit.ly/rsq8KC
OverDrive CEO drops hint that Kindle library lending launches in September
...the one librarian being Greg Hill, director of the Fairbanks (AK) North Star Borough libraries. Story from Newsminer.
FAIRBANKS - “E-reader ownership doubles in six months,” proclaimed the headline to a recent Pew Research news release. However, careful readers note that the 100 percent jump was because e-book ownership among U.S. adults increased from 6 percent to 12 percent. Ownership of tablet computers like iPads and Xooms, by comparison, increased in that time period by only 3 percent. The ongoing economic crisis may be dampening consumer purchasing of electronic devices, and print book publishing is still flourishing, but Pew’s articles and the ballyhoo surrounding e-books generally is causing consternation for many print-book lovers.
“Consternation” comes from the Latin stem word “consternare,” which meant “overcome, confuse, dismay, perplex, terrify, alarm.” Many librarians embrace the convenience of e-books; after all, reading’s reading, right? Maybe not. An article from 2008 titled “Not Quite Average: An Empirical Study of Web Use” found that “On the average, Web page users have time to read at most 28 percent of the words during an average visit; 20 percent is more likely.” Being connected to social media like Facebook and Twitter multiplies the stream of messages, notices and interruptions that constantly bombard the technorati, the technologically proficient, and make sustained reading online difficult. -- Read More