Andrew AlbaneseFrom Edward Snowden to Pope Francis, from the Syrian War to the Bitcoin Bubble, 2013 supplied reporters and the public with a hefty share of memorable stories, both ridiculous and sublime. In publishing, eyes were fixed throughout the year not on bookstore shelves but on courtroom benches. Decisions rendered in recent weeks have left coal in the stockings of authors, but will bring e-book buying bonuses to readers.

“The long-running Google suit was finally put to rest—although the Authors Guild has vowed an appeal,” notes Andrew AlbanesePublishers Weekly senior writer. “If I were the Authors Guild, though, re-focusing my energy away from tilting at this digital windmill would be at the top of my new year’s resolutions.”

Apart from courtroom drama, Albanese tells CCC’s Chris Kenneally he may remember 2013 best for critical developments in e-book library lending.

“Frankly, I think this goes to the very heart of the digital transition for publishing,” Albanese says. “We ended 2013 on a somewhat positive note, with virtually all the major publishers now participating in e-book lending in some form. However, the situation with library lending is far from resolved, and I really think that how this is finally sorted out will be key to the future of e-books.”

Every Friday, CCC’s “Beyond the Book” speaks with the editors and reporters of “Publishers Weekly” for an early look at the news that publishers, editors, authors, agents and librarians will be talking about when they return to work on Monday.

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