ENTRIES TAGGED "copyright reform"
The ebook price war is a "red herring," copyright needs the public's attention, and Wal-Mart (finally) breaks up with Amazon.
Here are a few stories that caught my attention this week in the publishing space.
Publishers, price is a distraction — focus on data control
Suw Charman-Anderson at Forbes took a look this week at Alison Flood’s report at The Guardian on the ebook price wars in the U.K., which are “prompting concerns from writers that the ‘relentless downward pressure on book prices’ could lead to industry ruin.” According to Flood’s report, authors and others in the industry are concerned that readers will get conditioned to these bargain basement prices, thus devaluing ebooks, and expect pricing at levels independent bookstores can’t afford to sustain.
Charman-Anderson argues that readers are smarter than that: “[t]he whole concept of sales, coupons, discounts and price wars is that the consumer gets something that’s worth more than the price paid, and they do so knowing full well that they’ve got a bargain. That’s what a bargain is.” She also argues that all these concerns over ebook price wars are a “red herring” diverting attention from the real problem. Referring to a post by Nick Harkaway at Futurebook, Charman-Anderson writes:
“Harkaway basically says that publishers need to become retailers in order to regain control over customer data, and he’s absolutely right. …. The value of customer data cannot be underestimated. Retail these days isn’t just about buying and selling; it’s about what additional value you can offer your customers based on the information you have about them.”
“The ebook price war is not the problem,” says Charman-Anderson. “The problem is that publishers have ceded the most valuable ground to the retailers.” Charman-Anderson’s piece is this week’s recommended read — you can find it here.
Two lawsuits address digital content copyright, Macmillan puts its money where the future is, and publishers experiment with QR codes.
Courts are establishing copyright laws regarding digital media resale and tweet content ownership, Macmillan is funding the business that will replace it, and QR codes help publishers market and collect consumer data.
Attorney Miles Feldman on the ins and outs of fair use.
Litigation and intellectual property attorney Miles Feldman addresses issues of fair use, including the deciding factors courts consider, research tools to determine the status of works, and Creative Commons licensing.
Google's Bill Patry on market signals and copyright terms.
In this video interview, Bill Patry, senior copyright counsel at Google, addresses the one-size-fits-all concept and says it doesn't make sense for copyright terms. He also talks about piracy and whether or not we should eliminate copyright.
A traditional publisher takes a bold digital step, copyright issues span sane to bizarre, and PayPal rescinds its role as censor.
Encyclopaedia Britannica unloads its print product, a Belgian copyright group wants libraries to pay for reading to children, and PayPal does a 180.