Ebooks

Bonfire of the Banned ITs: Why you can’t get the Kindle in Canada

If you live in Zimbabwe, Myanmar or the Falkland Islands, rejoice – you can now buy Amazon's white-hot electronic book-reader, the Kindle.

Canada, however, is still off-limits.

Amazon.com Inc. announced Wednesday it will begin selling the Kindle – which the company describes as the best-selling product among the millions it sells – in about 100 countries around the world.

But customers in Canada are still unable to order the device, possibly because of a delay in an agreement being reached with carriers over the Kindle's use of wireless technology to download content.

Full article here.

10 Ways Publishing Can Be Saved

10 Ways Publishing Can Be Saved: Instead having legal waste their time combing the Internet trying to find every single book illegally posted, they should be spending money on young marketers who might actually find a free-based model that would work. Here are a ten relatively simple ways publishers can make money off electronic publishing:

Kindle in the UK

Article in the Guardian about the Kindle in the UK.

Article raises some interesting questions. Because rights with some books differ from country to country you may not be able to download certain books depending what country you are in.

The article is here.

In E-Books, It’s an Army vs. Google

A broad array of authors, academics, librarians and public interest groups are fighting Google’s plan to create a huge digital library and bookstore.

Story here.

Kindle Goes International — With a Little Help From AT&T

Although Amazon’s Kindle e-reader has become the first major hit in its category — and the best-selling product in Amazon’s entire store this year — it does have its drawbacks. One of the biggest is that its wireless connection to the Kindle store works only in the U.S.

That changes on October 19, when Amazon begins shipping a new version of the Kindle that can be used to purchase and download books in over 100 countries. The new version, with the snappy name of “Kindle with US and International Wireless,” will sell for $280 and can be pre-ordered now.

The current version will still be for sale, and Amazon is dropping the price from $300 to $260. The bigger Kindle DX is unchanged.

Full story at Wired.com

Will Books Be Napsterized?

YOU can buy “The Lost Symbol,” by Dan Brown, as an e-book for $9.99 at Amazon.com.

Or you can don a pirate’s cap and snatch a free copy from another online user at RapidShare, Megaupload, Hotfile and other file-storage sites.

Until now, few readers have preferred e-books to printed or audible versions, so the public availability of free-for-the-taking copies did not much matter. But e-books won’t stay on the periphery of book publishing much longer. E-book hardware is on the verge of going mainstream. More dedicated e-readers are coming, with ever larger screens. So, too, are computer tablets that can serve as giant e-readers, and hardware that will not be very hard at all: a thin display flexible enough to roll up into a tube.

Full story in the NYT

Sony embraces small publishers and unknown authors on Sony Reader eBook store

The shift toward digital books is helping small-fry authors and publishers to get in front of wider audiences than ever before. That trend is being reinforced today as Smashwords announces that it has a distribution agreement to get its books published on Sony’s new eBook portal.

Full story here.

A Writer’s Plea: Figure Out How to Preserve Google Books

Author Alexis Madrigal posts this plea for Google Books on Wired's Epicenter blog and issues a challenge to libraries:

"The dispute over Google Books continues to rage in the courts and op-ed pages of the country. There are legitimate questions about Google, profit sharing and privacy. But let’s not let the litigation obscure that Google Books provides an unprecedented and irreproducible service to its users.

Libraries have been important for millennia because they could control access to valuable information. Now, that’s a strategy that leads straight to irrelevance.

A lot of smart librarians recognize the imperative of digitization but their institutions rarely give them money for such “low-priority” tasks."

Before Choosing an E-Book, Pondering the Format

Steve Jordan, a self-published science fiction novelist, has to make lots of decisions. Although most of them involve plot points, narrative arcs and character development, Mr. Jordan has the added burden of deciding how to deliver the stories he creates to his online audience.

Some of those readers own dedicated devices like Amazon.com’s Kindle, some plow through his books on smartphones, some use laptops and maybe a few even employ desktop PCs left over from the last century. (In true sci-fi fashion, Mr. Jordan doesn’t publish his novels on paper.)

The options are proliferating quickly for readers and the authors they love. While devices like the Kindle, the Apple iPhone and the Sony Reader get much of the attention, practically any electronic device capable of displaying a few lines of text can be adapted as a reader. The result has been a glut of hardware, software and e-book file formats for readers to sift through in searching for the right combination.

Full story in the NYT

Best Buy and Verizon Jump Into E-Reader Fray

The budding market for electronic reading devices is about to get two powerful new entrants: Best Buy and Verizon.

On Wednesday, iRex Technologies, a spinoff of Royal Philips Electronics that already makes one of Europe’s best-known e-readers, plans to announce that it is entering the United States market with a $399 touch-screen e-reader.

Full story in the NYT

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