Tag Archives: TOC

Changing World of Digital Rights and Publishing Agreements – O’Reilly webinar summary

Dana Newman and Jenny Bent presented at the O’Reilly webinar, The Changing World of Digital Rights and Publishing Agreements.  My interpretation of the content is below; best efforts were made to ensure accuracy. Follow the comments on Twitter at #TOCCON.  Kat says the slides will be on slideshare and a recording will be available in about 24 hours.

Kat Meyer introduced the speakers.  Dana Newman is a transactional and intellectual property attorney (@DanaNewman).  Jenny Bent is a literary agent who founded the Bent Agency.  She represents writers and has had 5 make the NYT Best Sellers list.  (A twitter post suggested adding the publisher perspective to this session)

Dana Newman’s presented the content and Jenny inserted responses throughout.

  • State of Digital Rights and Contracts:  Older contracts were vague on electronic rights, Dana cited a case between Random House and the Wylie Agency. Courts said the right to exploit in book form did not include an e-book format.  Review existing contracts look at grant of rights and subsidiary rights section, were digital rights provided for and if so, how?  Negotiate amendments if they are not present in old contracts.
  • How are electronic rights being defined in current contracts?  There are many subcategories in current contracts: verbatim text converted into an ebook, is it apps, multimedia rights, or web-based content? Continue reading

TOC – Inventory on Demand in the Digital Age

Inventory on Demand in the Digital Age

Panelists:  Laura Baldwin, O’Reilly Media and Phil Ollila, Ingram

Laura – reality of our biz, print and retail is still the bulk of the business. Print erosion cost, shipping costs, printing expenses, safety stock, operating capital are all factors in the profit/loss of publishers.

Strategically they wanted to deplete the amount of inventory and instead, make content available anywhere/anytime in a variety of formats. People expect faster cycle times (and not only in production).

Freedom plan – determine how to spend the capital.  Offset/digital short run (much smaller print runs, focused on shelf space awareness), back it up with print-to-order, combined with great forecasting tools. Continue reading

TOC – Solving the Digital Loan Problem: Can Library Lending of eBooks be a Win-Win for Publishers and libraries?

Solving the Digital Loan Problem: Can Library Lending of eBooks be a Win-Win for Publishers and libraries?

Ruth Liebmann, Random House, Micah Bowers, BlueFire Reader, Katie Dunneback, Librarian and Consultant

Katie set the stage with a broad introduction to libraries.  The people inside give the libraries meaning. Libraries develop relationships with their customers and advise on books to read (readers advisory). Libraries are discovery centers through the readers advisory services.  Libraries are where individuals experiment with new formats at low investment.  Libraries can help save the reader time.  Katie suggested ways that publishers can benefit from libraries, particularly by introducing slicker DRM and using the sills of MLS librarians who know cataloging and metadata.  Katie then demonstrated a 21 step process to download a public library ebook and download it to an eReader device.  Katie walked us through the readers advisory process, describing how she interviews patrons on their likes/dislikes of an author and recommend similar authors/series.  She also discusses eReaders with patrons and provided us with a list of eReader topics that she discussed with 2 patrons the previous week.  Topics included:  price, lighting, territorial rights, covers, library access, etc. Continue reading

TOC – Literary Reviewing in the Digital Age

Literary Reviewing in the Digital Age

Panelists:  Bethanne Patrick, Book Maven Media, (Moderator), Bob Carlton, Kirkus Reviews, Ron Charles, Washington Post, Sarah Weinman, Publishers Marketplace

Some of the questions addressed in the discussion were:  What are the biggest challenges to literary reviewing?   So many books, so many critics – how do readers sort through them? Is there still authority in book reviewing?  How do we review books that are now multimedia and do we need to? What will the next 2, 5 years, or even 6 months look like? Continue reading

TOC Keynote, Making the book truly accessible, Jim Fruchterman, Benetech

Jim Fruchterman wants to make the book truly accessible and feels we have a good start, but a long way to go. Bookshare is the largest online library for people with disabilities, they download more than 1 million books per year. His service only serves about 1% of the population, and they turn away so many people who don’t qualify for the free service.  He feels this is an untapped market for publishers.  People with disabilities want to buy books, read books, listen to books, etc.  At bookshare, they do a lot of content conversion to more accessible formats and can offer the content back to the publishers.  Their main product is the digital text, which is not a commercial quality ebook, thus you won’t find them on pirated sites. If Bookshare finds any of their titles on pirated sites, they contact the client, remove content, etc. Continue reading

TOC Keynote- Kevin Kelly, Wired

What Technology Wants, Kevin’s new book.  He says it’s the last paper book he’ll write because he is learning so much about digital publishing.

Kevin’s keynote discussed “What’s Next” in his view and he offered 6 trends (verbs), screening, interacting, sharing, accessing, flowing, generating.

Screening – screens everywhere, we are moving from people of the book, where author/authority go hand in hand, to people of the screen.  We are surrounded by screens, screens are becoming cheap enough to put anywhere.  This will be the context where we will publish books.  eInk, could it become bound into a flexible book? Screens are the portals into the machine for everything – books, TV, video, radio, web, etc..  One screen for all.  Orality – Literacy – Visuality. Continue reading

TOC – Publisher CTO Panel, the future of ebook technology, TeleRead

Summary of Tools of Change session, reprinted in full from Teleread.com by Paul Biba

Bill Godfrey (Elsevier), Rich Rothstein (HarperCollins Publishers), Andrew Savikas (O’Reilly Media, Inc.)Moderated by: Abe Murray (Google, Inc. )

Savikas: first foray in 1987. Stared with cd books and online books in 2001, which was first substantial digital presence. Wish is that Amazon would adopt epub as their standard. Digital is now about a decade for O’Reilly, and one of the biggest changes is that there are many more markets for digital products. Can’t imaging what it will be like in 10 years. Book will not go away – neither the package nor the long form narrative type of content. There will be a whole new category of new media that probably can’t be called books any more. Over the last 100 years more and more layers built up between publishers and consumers and web is bringing us back to a more direct relationship. In his experience the interest in enhanced ebooks seems to come from the publishers more than it does from the reader. Now that books can know that they are being read this can lead to enhanced opportunities. Databases are prime examples for turning into enhanced books. Not convinced that advertising will be as much of the future of newspapers and magazines it has been in the passed. Newspapers have lost the monopoly of being a source of local information. There is what value and need for what newspapers provide, but the package is obsolete. Publishers should be taking a stronger role in advocating with the retailers and device makers. Big piece of the epub 3 revision is to support dynamic delivery to different devices. Continue reading

TOC – EPUB 3 Update

EPUB 3 update panel included Robert Kasher (Book Masters), Keith Fahlgren (Threepress Consulting Inc.), George Kerscher (Daisy Consortium), Bill Kasdorf (Apex Content Solutions)

EPUB 3 was just announced this morning by the IDPF.  The final draft of standard being readied for release at BEA 2011.  http://idpf.org/epub/30 – public release of standard here, ready for comment, looking for lots of comment/feedback from the international community.  They have a great “human readable” document to give everyone an overview/introduction of what this is.

A few items of interest from the presentation are below.  Lots more tweets at #toccon

Accessibility Issues – DAISY consortium have been an integral part of the development of EPUB 3. Accessibility features are woven throughout EPUB 3.  Some key features:  reading order will be well defined, ability to use navigation center to go to different areas of the book, page numbering that is aligned with the print counterpart, semantic structure will be enriched.

Metadata side of things – this standard is designed to be backwards compatible.  New model is built on Dublin CORE and uses a tiny subset of RDFA 1.1.  Not just books!  This will work with other formats too – newspapers, magazines, etc.

Multimedia – now have a way to embed multimedia into EPUB.  Also inheriting richer multimedia – MathML, SVG, allow more of the app like experience, etc.

Concluded with Collective Soul’s “Better Now”

TOC – Accessible Publishing Practices

Can you afford not to consider accessible publishing practices?, presented by Dave Gunn, Royal National Institute of Blind People. Dave commented on how TOC last year had no mention of disabilities and was appreciative of the discussions already happening this year.  More info on accessible publishing here:  rnib.org.uk/ebookguidance

Dave provided an overview of accessibility and discussion on how people with disabilities can/cannot access eBooks.   The following notes are my own interpretation of Dave’s presentation and my best attempts were made to ensure accuracy.

If this was just down to morals, we’d all be doing this already.  What is happening is the justification of the business end/challenges of making books accessible.  What are the benfits, risks, ROI, etc. for businesses?

3 reasons

  1. It makes business sense
  2. It makes business sense
  3. It makes business sense Continue reading

TOC – Digital Textbooks Panel Summary

Panel discussion on eTextbooks in Higher Education:  Practical Findings to Guide the Industry.   Panelists included Jade Roth, Curtiss Barnes, Nick Francesco, David McCarthy, Jacob Robinson, and Susan Stites-Doe.  Panelist names/titles are available on the conference website.

Notes are my own interpretation and my best attempts were made to ensure accuracy.

Some overview data:  15% of textbook content is avaiable in digital format, yet only 1 – 3% of higher education sales are digital, sales are across all disciplines, there is no clear winner in the format.

14% of students have purchased digital materials, primarily for cost savings, 18% purchase for features, and 10% for curiosity. Continue reading