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ALA welcomes Court of Appeals reinforcement of fair use in Georgia State University case
October 23, 2014 | 12:25 pm

gsu-logo.jpgThe American Library Association (ALA) has issued a positive response to the recent decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit handed in Cambridge University Press et al. v. Carl V. Patton et al., a case previously covered by Chris Meadows here. This is the latest round of proceedings following the suit bought by the Cambridge and Oxford University Presses, and SAGE Publishers against Georgia State University for copyright infringement in 2008. Courtney Young, president of the ALA, said: “The appellate court’s decision emphasizes what ALA and other library associations have always supported—thoughtful analysis of fair use and a rejection...

Updates from Ottawa!
October 23, 2014 | 10:25 am

canada.jpegI'm sure everyone has heard the news by now about yesterday's events in my nation's capital. We have a young relative in Ottawa who we visit there several times a year, and we have been to all those places; we were relieved to speak to him last night to find everything going well. The teachers were in 'safe' mode but not actual lockdown, so although the school doors were locked and the windows closed and curtained, they were able to run a regular school day and he had no clue anything was going on. We of course had been following the...

Morning Links: Ellora’s Cave vs Dear Author removed to Federal Court. Kindle vs. Kindle
October 23, 2014 | 9:00 am

kindleEllora's Cave vs Dear Author Suit Removed to Federal Court (The Passive Voice) Dear Author has just removed the case from the Ohio state court where it was originally filed to the relevant U.S. District Court in Ohio claiming diversity jurisdiction is present in the case. *** How Piracy Benefits Companies, Even if They Don't Admit it (Lifehacker) We've talked a lot about the legality of piracy a lot here at Lifehacker, but really, you're probably breaking the law everyday anyway. However, piracy can sometimes have its benefits. Even to the companies who own the copyrights. *** Ten Things I've Learned About Life from Blogging (Design...

Book Review: Brothers in Crime by KM Rockwood
October 22, 2014 | 2:25 pm

brothers in crimeThe fun part about going to writer's conference is that you meet lots of writers and get opportunities for review copies, especially if you let folks know you review books. KM Rockwood is a delightful person, and I was happy to accept a review copy of her latest book, [easyazon-link asin="B00K2L77XU" locale="us"]Brothers in Crime[/easyazon-link]. When she asked me if I wanted the first in the series or a later book, I opted for the latest book, to see if book would stand alone as well as she said it would. The good news is that it does. However, this is an odd...

Trend Watch: online blogs of analog journals
October 22, 2014 | 12:25 pm

analog journalsSince I first posted about my new art habit, I have been bitten by the art bug, hard, and have been trolling the Pinterest world for inspiration. I found a neat thing---a whole sub-culture of bloggers who are creating their analog journals off-line using paper and paint and pen, and then posting the results digitally. That is a fascinating snapshot, to me, of what the internet world is going to look like more and more, as it is maturing. People value the internet for information, for ideas, for sharing. But they increasingly will be craving the offline stuff too. The Beloved...

The literary glories of Ireland in pictures
October 22, 2014 | 10:25 am

literaryirelandAs a Scot, I can sometimes feel envious of our amazing Celtic neighbor and its outsize contribution to modern literature. Even if so much of that record was because, as W.H. Auden wrote of Yeats, "mad Ireland hurt him into poetry," Ireland did at least end up with poetry along with its madness - and much more. This extensively researched infographic comes courtesy of Irish schools specialist book chain BuyBooks.ie, put together by the UK's NeoMam Studios. And even if it originated on the wrong side of the Irish Sea, who could shut their eyes to the pride of Erin ...  ...

Morning Links: What’s next for Authors United? Easier switch from iOS to Android
October 22, 2014 | 9:00 am

authors unitedWhat's Next for Authors United? (David Gaughran) Perhaps it’s time for Douglas Preston to widen the aims of the group and start campaigning on issues which actually matter. *** Make the Switch from iOS to Android with Google's New Guide (Lifehacker) If you're not excited about the new features in iOS 8, you might consider switching to Android. Thankfully, Google just released a guide to help make the switch easier. *** How Soon Will the Majority of Books be Self-Published? (Publishing Perspectives) Literary agent Andrew Lownie believes that in 5-10 years, 75% of books will be self-published, 20% assisted by agents, and only 5% traditionally published. *** Margaret Atwood...

Atavist Books to close down at the end of 2014
October 21, 2014 | 7:41 pm

sleepdonation I had occasion to mention Atavist Books in March of this year. when it launched with the novella Sleep Donation and proclaimed its intention to “revolutionize book publishing” with interactive multimedia books. At the time, I expressed my doubts that anybody actually wanted the platform it was building. It seems that events have borne out my supposition. Saying that it’s found “the market for highly innovative enhanced full length literary e-books still heavily relies on a print component and has yet to emerge,” Atavist Books has announced it will be closing down its e-book-publishing operation as of...

Margo Howard takes up New Republic’s anti-Amazon banner, disses Vine club for daring to review her
October 21, 2014 | 4:25 pm

Author entitlement is a wonderful thing. Just by putting pen to paper, you can be forgiven for child abuse. Stalking. Abusing your readers. Grumpy-catting when you can't get the recognition and validation you paid for. Especially in your own mind. Apparently it's all part of that miraculous creative process. So welcome Margo Howard as today's star turn in authorial over-self-entitlement. (Is that a word? Sorry, English language, but it sure is an accurate description.) Aided and abetted, as these cases so often are, by a paranoid conspiracy theory - which is given added credence and visibility, in this instance, because it...

What would make an Amazon competitor competitive?
October 21, 2014 | 2:25 pm

competitionAs all and sundry go round and round about Amazon/Hachette and the end of author royalties as we know it, I stopped to consider. I believe the eBook marketplace is healthier with competition, even if Amazon is right now a pretty darned good company to do business with. I do not consider B&N, Kobo or Apple to be the ideal competition, although together, they may not be too bad. So, I asked myself, with both my reader and author hats on, what it would take to be a contender in the eBook marketplace. As a reader This was tough because Amazon does...

Is online privacy an unreasonable expectation?
October 21, 2014 | 12:25 pm

online privacyJanet at Dear Author has a well-argued opinion piece up today on the whole Kathleen Hale story---I'd actually been reading up about it before Paul covered it yesterday but I still had not formulated my response to it and was content to let another Teleread contributor beat me to the punch. Janet makes some good points that I think bear highlighting, and that sum up a lot of what my own musings were on this story. Firstly, this: "That, for example, The Guardian saw fit to publish the Hale piece, despite all of its obvious problems, is not merely baffling to me,...

Does the Hemingwrite reflect the true nature of modern writing?
October 21, 2014 | 10:25 am

An interesting product came up on my radar yesterday. And I'm not one to diss genuine creativity and inventiveness gratuitously, but I do wonder. The Hemingwrite, you see, is designed as "A Distraction Free Writing Tool," offering the functionality of an old-style word processor, the ergonomics of a typewriter, and the freedom from distractions of a hermit's cave. And designed for decades of use. The Hemingwrite's features include a mechanical keyboard, an e-ink display with backlight, and Evernote cloud backup - for despite its retro styling, the Hemingwrite is a connected beast. What it is not, however, is connected to the...