Ebook Developers Need a Seat at the Planning Table

via Ebook Developers Need a Seat at the Planning Table | Digital Book World.

Needless to say, editors, marketers and sales teams can’t be faulted for not planning for any of these things themselves. Their expertise lies elsewhere and is no less essential to the success of any given title. But the truth of the matter is that everyone loses out when production experts don’t have a seat at the table early in the publishing process—not least of all the ebooks that come out of it.

  • plenty of artifacts on the proverbial cutting room floor that could add lateral depth to many digital products
  • thinking ahead to keeping the color versions of images that will later be converted to grayscale for print so they can be returned to color for the ebook
  • reminding editors that a yellow, low-contrast cover is going to disappear on an e-ink device
  • ferret away descriptions of the commissioned illustrations that can be used later for the descriptive ALT text
  • push the production editor to secure post-print image rights
  • encourage typographical choices that can be maintained in the ebook
  • developer will understand the glyph and diacritics needs of the content 
  • push fixed-layout projects away from trim sizes that will be letter-boxed badly on tablets
  • keep archived versions of the artwork that preserve all the layers
  • keep the expressive text as a separate layer, not flattened into the artwork

HTML5 Is as Good As It Gets for Publisher Digital Content: BLOG@IGP

Print books are edited and produced in a production machine that has spent 400 years learning how to do XY content presentation on paper; and there are still lousy looking print books produced.

via HTML5 Is as Good As It Gets for Publisher Digital Content: BLOG@IGP.

Do We Need Consumer Protection for eBooks?

Australia, Canada, Europe, UK and the United States do not have any current protection laws for digital books. They leave it up to the publishing industry and resellers to determine how best to run their own businesses and to develop their own licensing agreements. With millions of eBooks, comics and manga being lost after purchasing on a worldwide scale, something needs to be done to augment the First Sale Doctrine, Copyright Software Rental Amendments Act and Digital Millenium Copyright Act to protect customers from companies indiscriminately removing purchased content or to save it from a company going out of business.

via Do We Need Consumer Protection for eBooks?

BitLit announces HarperCollins ebook bundling pilot programme | FutureBook

In a potentially major gain for the ebook-bundling concept, BitLit today is announcing its first deal with a Big Five publisher. HarperCollins US has entered what is being described as a pilot programme with the Vancouver-based BitLit to offer discounted ebook editions of print books that readers already own.


By way of demonstrating this bookshop-friendly stance, BitLit has teamed up with 13 prominent Canadian bookstores between Vancouver and Toronto in a Summer Reads programme that offers a selection of ebooks free to readers who buy the print editions. The applicable books are marked in participating bookstores with stickers that offer a “BitLit.com Free eBook with purchase of print book.”


In a prepared statement, HarperCollins’ chief digital officer, Chantal Restivo-Alessi, lays out the logic of the arrangement for the publisher in this pilot programme: “BitLit offers readers another way to engage with the books they’ve purchased so they can read in various formats as they choose. It provides added value to consumers at a discounted price, and additional sales for our authors.”


And when asked if we’ll see the day when the buyer of an ebook can then apply to BitLit for a discounted print edition of that book? Hudson: “Stay tuned.”


via BitLit announces HarperCollins ebook bundling pilot programme | FutureBook

Is Selling Direct Worth It?

“I’m sure HarperCollins is well-intentioned,” said Jack McKeown, a former executive at both HarperCollins and Perseus Books and now president of Books and Books, a bookstore in Westhampton, N.Y. “Publishers do need to engage consumers and offer buy buttons for their convenience. But an aggressive pursuit of direct sales, I think, is misguided and a misallocation of resources.” While publishers with deep expertise in specific genres, such as Tor or Harlequin, can do well selling direct, McKeown said an overemphasis on direct selling is a mistake for large general interest publishers. “Consumers are not looking for publishers, they’re looking to retailers to aggregate and recommend titles. Harper is disaggregating our audience. They can’t offer an array of topics and publications. While I do understand what they are trying to do, they should be working to amplify their existing retail channels.”

via Is Selling Direct Worth It?