The Day Digital Died

It was a seemingly innocuous situation… I was sitting in a room filled with publishing types: book publishers, librarians, agents, industry press, metadata specialists, and consultants of varying shapes and sizes. We were there in an advisory role to one of the digital publishing conferences. Read the rest of this entry »

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  • Published: Sep 27th, 2010
  • Category: Books
  • Comments: 21

Ebooks Don’t Cannibalize Print, People Do

Last week in The Bookseller, Philip Jones covered a seminar in the UK by Enders Analysis that presented data done as a part of a Nielsen BookScan report.  The article led with the following statement.

“The growth in e-book sales in genres such as romance and science-fiction is leading to a cannibalisation in sales of printed books, according to Nielsen BookScan data.”

This led to the inevitable debate on the Read2.0 listserv (also known as the Brantley List for the devoted followers of Mike Shatzkin). While there was little illumination in the ensuing voluminous discussion, there was an overall consensus that ebooks were indeed cannibalizing print books. Read the rest of this entry »

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  • Published: Jul 15th, 2010
  • Category: Books
  • Comments: 36

Pass the Gestalt, Please

In the past two weeks I have heard forcefully stated pronouncements by agent Andrew Wylie and chair of the Society of Authors, Tom Holland, regarding ebook royalty rates.  A 50/50 share between author and publisher is the only possible outcome they can accept, citing the tired and somewhat old argument we have heard before:

The publisher has little or no incremental out of pocket cost to create ebooks, therefore the income should be split in the same manner as subsidiary rights, which is generally 50/50. Read the rest of this entry »

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  • Published: Jun 18th, 2009
  • Category: Books
  • Comments: 3

Nuthin’ but Net

One of the truly inspiring thing about ebooks is that they offer endless opportunity to iterate and morph selling and access models. Technology drives change and innovation, which in turn allows for all kinds of new and interesting features. All kinds of selling and access models are floating around out there, some that allow extension of purchase rights beyond a single user. There are models that offer no specific items to download and hold on any device, models that offer real-time content updates, models that offer print plus ebooks, ebooks plus TTS audio, subscriptions to ebooks, and on and on and on.

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