Today I presented at the Argentine Library Association Conference about ebooks in US Libraries, thanks to an invitation from the American Embassy (in Buenos Aires) Information Resource Center. I offered information about purchasing and accessing eBooks and about lending eReaders in libraries. But, I learned quite a bit in return! For example, no one who attended my presentation (about 80 librarians) offered ebooks in their library. Also, only 2 of the attendees owned an eReader (one Kindle and one iPad if you are counting). Why? There just are not many Spanish language eBooks available for libraries and the format has not become as popular yet. I expect this will change soon, as more publishers offer eBooks and US publishers move into the South American market. Continue reading
calibre recently introduced Open Books, a site for easy browsing of DRM-free e-books (e-books without DRM) that are not in the public domain.
From their website: calibre has a cornucopia of features including library management, e-book conversion, syncing with devices, news download, e-book viewing etc, but to make the most of these features with your e-books you need to ensure your e-books do not carry DRM. Open Books is a compilation non DRM e-books from various sources linked to enable readers to browse and download them. Open Books invites you to submit links to DRM free e-books that you would like added to the database. Open Books invites you to submit links to DRM free e-books that you would like added to the database. Contact us with details of your DRM-free e-books on the calibre facebook fanpage or #calibreforum page. Please do not include links to books on Smashwords or Baen as we are already aware of them.
Margaret Atwood provided a keynote at TOC called, “The Publishing Pie: An Author’s View” Margaret admitted she is not a high tech person, but delivered her genuine, humorous keynote from the heart. She shared much of her experience with publishing, showing us rare pieces of her previous work, including her first book of poetry from 1946, Blue Bunny. She was 6. Her story of selling/signing one of her first books, The Edible Woman, was a treat. She was set-up in the men’s department of a large department store, near the jockey shorts and socks. Margaret said most of the men ran away, she sold only two copies.
Unfortunately, the live feed went out twice during the presentation (I was in the overflow room), so I missed much of “the publishing pie,” but I’ll be sure to watch it on the O’Reilly site.
Her final slide was signed….”Thank you for being here, Margaret Atwood.” 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
Casper Grathwohl from Oxford University Press and Kassidy Lackey from Handmark spoke about mobile applications for reference tools. Casper provided examples of several vendor-based apps like Gale’s AccessMyLibrary, university library mobile apps, and some apps designed for OUP. OUP has 85 apps, which cover a variety of reference subjects. These are marketed mostly to the consumer and OUP reports close to 1 million in application revenue, which is only a small part of their complete revenue. Casper was surprised to see that libraries and publishers are not yet working together on mobile apps but felt that the opportunities are available, particularly in the area of discovery since both parties have a vested interest in seeing use of the content. Continue reading
From an Encyclopaedia Britannica Press Release: Students and teachers who need photos and other images for research, papers and projects can now find them easily and conveniently in Britannica Image Quest, a new online database from Britannica Digital Learning. The Web site, which is now available to schools, universities and libraries, currently provides images from more than 40 of the best collections in the world, including Encyclopaedia Britannica, Dorling Kindersley, Getty, the National Portrait Gallery of London, the National Geographic Society and Oxford Scientific. Continue reading
For your weekend reading pleasure:
ModernBookFactory.com: The First Complete Online Audiobook Production and App Development Service for Independent Publishers and Authors
From an OverDrive press release:
OverDrive’s Digital Bookmobile (www.digitalbookmobile.com) will demonstrate digital book downloads available from America’s public libraries at the 2010 National Book Festival (www.loc.gov/bookfest) on Saturday, September 25, from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on the National Mall in Washington, DC. This high-tech 18-wheeler and mobile exhibit offers hands-on demonstrations of download services available 24/7 from more than 11,000 libraries worldwide.
Digital Bookmobile visitors will be able to browse a library’s download website; sample eBooks, digital audiobooks, music, and video on interactive PC and Mac® computer stations; learn how to download; and test compatible devices including the Sony® Reader, nook™, iPod®, Zune®, and Smartphones—all loaded with digital titles from the library. Continue reading
There is a new podcast from Copyright Clearance Center’s Beyond the Book, which features an interview with Executive Director of Small Publishers Association of North America (SPAN) Scott Flora and Winoca Books & Media founder Barbara Brannon. In a pointed discussion on the future of independent publishing, Flora emphasizes SPAN’s mission to create a new, more distinguished class of independent publishers with better professional product and improved access to distribution and bookstores. To this end, SPAN and Winoca Book & Media will form a committee this summer to develop the Professional Independent Publisher (PIP) with the aim of providing certifications to independent publishers. CCC encourages publishers and supporters to voice their opinion of the program and comment on the discussion on the CCC Facebook Fan Page – http://www.facebook.com/BeyondTheBook
The podcast and transcript links are available below: