Norway is digitizing all its books and making them free to read online – Yes, you read that right: Norway is digitizing all of its books and allowing them to be read for free. In fact, Norway is going beyond similar efforts of the UK and Finland by “making agreements with many publishers to allow anyone with a Norway IP address to access copyrighted material.” Apparently they started the digitization process back in 2006, estimate that the project will take 20 to 30 years, and includes documents from the Middle Ages to the current time. It’s a pretty interesting direction to take, especially when contrasted to some of the more draconian terms of the US DMCA.The Verge
Pocket Hits Best of 2013: Best of the Best – Another “best of” list, this time the top stories culled from more than 450 million items and winnowed down to the top ten, starting with a Guardian link titled “News is bad for you – and giving up reading it will make you happier.” Does that mean we should only read #1 on the Pocket list? Intentional or not, the irony’s pretty delicious. Pocket
12 Days of Gifts on the App Store on iTunes – For those of you with an iThing, this app may be just the belated holiday gift you were hoping for. Or not. The good news is that it’s free, and for 12 days, between December 26th and January 3rd, you can download a gift a day of some form of digital content. Beware geographical limitations, however.Apple
Indies Are Getting Clobbered by Big Name eBook Discounts – But Not For The Reason You Think – Very interesting analysis of the reasons for a drop in sales among “indie authors.” Note Hoffelder looks at the way the Big 5 schedule and market their releases, and notices that “the uncoordinated nature” of their promotions can often mean that indie books face periodic barrages of competitive marketing from the Big 5 publishers, directing sales away from indie books, despite their lower average price point:
“As anyone in publishing can tell you, the Big 5 publishers release most of their Fall titles in a tight window starting in late September and stretching to early December. That’s a huge influx of content from popular and best-selling authors, and it’s pretty obvious that the major ebookstores are going to push the hot new releases. So of course indie authors might see a noticeable drop in sales as readers spend their limited budget on more expensive ebooks.”The Digital Reader
Judge Approves Final E-book Settlements – In spite of RoyaltyShare founder Bob Kohn’s lone, continuing pursuit of standing to appeal the settlements, Judge Cote approved the terms of Penguin and Macmillan’s settlements, paving the way for consumer refunds as early as the beginning of 2014.
“After the hearing, Texas state attorney Rebecca Fisher told PW that consumer refunds could now be issued, but not in time for the Christmas holiday season. It will take 30 days for Cotes final judgment to take effect, Fisher said, meaning that refunds will not hit consumer accounts until early 2014 at the earliest. After that, it will likely take another 15-30 days for the various retailers to disburse the settlement funds to consumers, possibly longer. At the hearing, Cote also approved the payment of legal fees.”
A bit about Kohn’s argument: he’s not claiming that publishers were innocent of price-fixing; rather, he argued that price fixing was not per se illegal in these circumstances, because “it was undertaken to address ‘inefficiencies’ in the market,” most notably Amazon’s pricing. Kohn’s argument directly contradicted Apple’s own defense, resting on an assertion that the price-fixing was “pro-competitive.” Oops, I probably should have warned you not to read that while you were drinking your morning coffee. Sorry.Publishers Weekly
isn't sure if she's an average Romance reader, or even an average reader, but a reader she is, enjoying everything from literary fiction to philosophy to history to poetry. Historical Romance was her first love within the genre, but she's fickle and easily seduced by the promise of a good read. She approaches every book with the same hope: that she will be filled from the inside out with something awesome that she didnÊ¼t know, didnÊ¼t think about, or didnÊ¼t feel until that moment. And she's always looking for the next mind-blowing read, so feel free to share any suggestions!