3 de abril de 2011

Leituras Digitais (27 de Março a 2 de Abril)

Rubrica semanal de notícias e artigos relacionados com a edição de livros digitais.

 For years, aggressive sales reps would move their books around. In the years before computerized inventory record keeping, it was incumbent on reps to count the books that were on the shelf to coax out a backlist reorder; that gave them ample opportunity to face books out, move books up, and point it out when a book was displayed in something less than the optimal subject section.
  Now the paradigm has changed. The default front table is the choice of titles on the screen that comes up first when a store’s program is opened. That’s almost always that retailer’s bestsellers (and, as far as I can tell, it isn’t customized for me at any of these retailers; you or my wife would see the same default screen that I would.)
  The question is: If Barnes & Noble really is ordering Nooks by the millions, is planning a big headline-grabbing update in a few weeks, and is leveraging the price of its Nook Color as one of the most affordable large-screen Android tablets that costs half the iPad's price... can the Nook actually corner the e-reader market?
  Creo que hay que ser voluntariamente optimista. Lo que más me ha preocupado en los últimos años no ha sido la aparición del libro digital, sino una nueva manera de buscar satisfacción en las comunidades adolescentes, que han sumado al tiempo dedicado a la televisión toda una plétora de actividades y prácticas sociales en Internet, de manera que cada vez disponen de menos tiempo para leer.
  In an environment with an ever-increasing digital component, judging success by how many you sold is doomed to fail. You have to judge success by how much revenue you took in. Why? Because after you’ve paid all the costs to get to the point of having an ebook to sell, everything after that is essentially free. Yes, there’s a small fee for digital distribution, and authors have a percentage royalty they’ve earned. But as that’s a percentage royalty, and not a per-unit royalty, it scales. The publisher’s job at that point should be to maximize revenue. In a way, this is the same for print, but as you actually have to plan how many copies you’re printing and pay for them in advance, there’s much more upfront investment risk involved every time you print more copies.
  I don't for a minute believe that these authors / agents are out to destroy the publishing industry, as some have implied. Rather, their actions appear to be driven principally by two things: the first is a frustration at a perceived lack of initiative amongst publishers to create, promote, and market titles effectively in a digital marketplace; the second is publishers' refusal to offer authors anything more than 25% of net receipts on sales of digital books (i.e. what is left after VAT and the retailer's cut).
  On March 18 the Swiss parliament approved a fixed price system for books in German-speaking Switzerland, both for online and in-store sales as of next year. The debate over fixed book pricing is a complicated and volatile one in Europe. Various degrees of price control exist side by side, and countries vacillate on the legality and benefit of fixed price systems. In Germany all books, including e-books and books sold as apps, are included in the fixed price system. French law excludes books that don’t closely correspond to a printed edition (apps), as well as foreign buyers and sellers. Britain hasn’t had fixed book pricing since the Net Book Agreement was declared illegal in 1997.
  Speaking about publishers in general, Land said: "The thing that really annoys me is that they won’t even negotiate a decent rate . . . They say ‘25% is perfectly reasonable’. They need to stop pretending it’s so expensive. I’ve just done it. I can do my sums."
  I do still believe that machines like the Espresso could be the future of print reading—if print sales fall far enough, it will be less economical for publishers to keep doing large print runs, and machines like the Espresso will be the way that those who want printed books can get them. But I wonder just how long it will take before they start taking off.
New York Times E-Book Best Sellers

 These lists are an expanded version of those appearing in the April 10, 2011 print edition of the Book Review, reflecting sales for the week ending March 26, 2011.

E-Book Fiction

1.                      THE LINCOLN LAWYER, by Michael Connelly
2.                      LIVE WIRE, by Harlan Coben
3.                      WATER FOR ELEPHANTS, by Sara Gruen
4.                      SING YOU HOME, by Jodi Picoult
5.                      LOVE YOU MORE, by Lisa Gardner

E-Book Nonfiction

1.                      HEAVEN IS FOR REAL, by Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent
2.                      UNBROKEN, by Laura Hillenbrand
3.                      THE IMMORTAL LIFE OF HENRIETTA LACKS, by Rebecca Skloot
4.                      MOONWALKING WITH EINSTEIN, by Joshua Foer
5.                      UNFAMILIAR FISHES, by Sarah Vowell

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