Best of BTB: They Know What You Read

Earlier this month, Rakuten — Japan’s e-commerce giant, akin to Amazon in the US – announced it would acquire Cleveland-based Overdrive, a supplier of digital content to libraries. In January at the Digital Book World Conference, Overdrive’s David Burleigh and...

Book Buying By The Numbers

What’s black and white and read all over? A survey of consumer book-buying habit just out from the Nielsen Market Research. This week, the book world began poring over the findings, covering everything from shares of print and digital sales, to preferences for digital...

IBPA Pub-U Is On A Mission

Once upon a time, authors and publishers, along with readers and booksellers, knew their separate places in the book world and they stuck to them.  The distribution of power was uneven, maybe even unfair, but the pecking order seemed to make sense. Once upon a time is...

Salinger And the Public Domain

The legal definition of “public domain” is property that is available or accessible to the public, such as a National Park. In copyright, “P.D.” refers to inventions, writings, recordings or photographs not protected by intellectual property law. Often enough, the...

The Shape Of User Demand

Along what once was called the information superhighway, platforms and technologies are the vehicles and the roads. These together require smooth-running traffic patterns. Just as railroads run alongside rivers, and thoroughfares line up with but never cross airport...

Book Business On A Trampoline

The business of books has more ups and downs than a kangaroo on a trampoline. This week, the Association of American Publishers StatShot program released final numbers for reported sales in 2014; Barnes & Noble also reported its third quarter earnings. The...

Publishers Forum “Reconstructing Publishing”

For reasons both challenging and exciting, the digital transformation of the book industry has closed the spaces separating competitors and colleagues across the spectrum of media. Indeed, the annual Publishers Forum bears a name that somewhat obscures its ambitions....

The Biggest of the Small in Publishing

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” For book publishing, those lines ring true in any era, but especially our own. Books today compete against a wide spectrum of entertainment, and the time we have to devote to reading is under more pressure than...

Conversion Architectures

In books and other media, authors and publishers traditionally have products to market and sell, whether in digital or physical formats. But an emerging business view holds that opportunity lies beyond the products. In this approach, the audience is where the money...