Apple’s new in-app selling rules are in effect, requiring retailers to give Apple 30% of revenues from book sales. As a result, Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, and Google Books have stopped selling books through their apps. SONY’s app was rejected back in February for the same reasons. There’s lots of news coverage, a few are linked below:
Sorry for the long list, I was out last week and didn’t get to post this.
On Tuesday, May 3rd I recorded a 15 minute segment for the Southwestern Ohio Council for Higher Education on Think TV, the local public television station in Dayton, Ohio. My topic was the rise of digital textbooks and options available for students and faculty to access and produce textbooks and learning materials. Below is a snapshot of my general comments with links to various sources for more information.
Our current textbook system is broken. We have arrived at $200 textbooks and have students who cannot afford them. As a result, students try to borrow a textbook from the library or a friend (sometimes the older edition), purchase a used one, or go without. Neither of these options provides revenue to the publisher, thus resulting in higher price points in an effort to recover the costs or production. What can we do about this catch 22? Continue reading
Reprinted in full from PAFA.net – http://www.pafa.net/archives/3129
Lendle.me, one of the new and very popular ebook lending services, was shut down today. Amazon has pulled the plug on them. The API that connects them to the Amazon database has been revoked. According the a@lendleapp tweet, Amazon said Lendle doesn’t “serve the principal purpose of driving sales of products and services on the Amazon site.” Other lending sites have also had their API pulled according to this statement from Lendle. Continue reading
From their press release: Springer eBooks can now also be purchased via Google’s eBookstore. Google currently holds the biggest collection of Springer eBooks with more than 52,000 books, which is a combination of physically scanned books published prior to 2006 and PDF file submissions since 2006. Springer adds 4,000 newly published titles per year.
Springer eBooks are also available on Amazon for the Kindle, and in the near future Barnes & Noble for the NookStudy.com platform, Kobo Books, B&T BLIO, Entourage and Apple’s iBooks, which is now receiving books in the free and open ebook format ePub. Springer will soon also deliver books in ePub format to Amazon for the Kindle. Continue reading
Reprinted in full from One Librarian’s Perspective, by Tim Kambitsch, Director of the Dayton Metro Library.
It is fashionable to declared Digital Rights Management (DRM) dead. And maybe in the world of music it is. For eBooks in the library marketplace, however, DRM is alive and well. The book publishers who may be more conservative than the music industry in trying to protect their intellectual property are willing to stymie sales in electronic formats to maximize their sense of security.
In the ideal open-yet-market-driven eBook environment there won’t be DRM, but regardless of whether DRM lives on, the closed vertically integrated world of eBooks sales to libraries presents a bigger problem; it is that environment that needs to change. For libraries to both offer electronic collections and maintain their role of building collections for the long term we need a layered environment where the purchase of materials is separated from the where those purchased materials are hosted. Further, library patrons deserve distinct choices for the programs and devices they use for readings. Continue reading
My friend and colleague, Erik Christopher (@eBookNoir), recently wrote a two part article on lending eBooks for Publishing Perspectives. Cleverly titled, “Friends Romans, Librarians: Lend Me Your eBooks” (parts 1 and 2), Christopher discusses lending issues with Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and OverDrive.