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Other posts by Steven Lyle Jordan

AAP says legislation is bad, but what’s good is… uh…
March 15, 2012 | 11:13 am

From an article in the Chronicle of Higher Education: The annual meeting of the Association of American Publishers reached one consensus: Fighting online piracy with legislation is not the way to go.  However, they agree that online piracy must be fought and controlled.  With what? That seems to be the question... still. Cary Sherman, the chairman and chief executive officer of the Recording Industry Association of America, agreed that "legislation brings out the worst in people" and that voluntary agreements are more flexible. After "the digital tsunami" of opposition that brought down SOPA and PIPA, he said, it's hard now to imagine...

Read an E-Book Week–and Month–Is Here
March 2, 2012 | 3:24 pm

It's here!  It's here!  Time to go to your favorite nook (!) and wait for The Great Electron to bestow upon all the good girls and boys some wonderful ebooks (and maybe a reading device or two). For those who haven't been in awhile, the redesigned Read an E-Book Week website has continued to grow and improve, and new deals and freebies await your examination.  The redesign has already received many kudos and congratulations for its improved usability, and has helped to draw a few more supporters under its wing. Rita hasn't heard from anyone yet, but we're hoping a few people...

The danger of the “easy route”
February 28, 2012 | 1:18 pm

From TechCatcher: When I first began selling ebooks, there was no Kindle store; Sony hadn't yet begun to sell ebooks, and Smashwords was not yet heard of.  So there weren't a lot of examples for a newbie like me to follow in setting up my site.  Fortunately, I knew HTML, so I was able to design my own site.  But when it came to collecting money and sending products, I didn't have the programming savvy (or money) to figure it out on my own. After some research, I turned to PayPal to handle my transactions.  PayPal had already positioned itself to...

Read an E-Book Week 2012 is racking up the promotions
February 23, 2012 | 1:08 pm

The Read an E-Book Week website for 2012 is loading up on promotions and giveaways for the March 4-10 week (and a few that will cover the entire month of March, in honor of the proclamation of Read an E-Book Month in Canada). 15 authors are offering free giveaways at the moment, and over 20 ebook publishers are also supplying promotions.  The list of participants come from Canada, the U.S., the Philippines, Argentina, Italy, Australia, Poland and Hungary.  And at present, there are contests to give away as many as five ebook reading devices. Rita Toews would like to remind everyone of...

Read an E-Book Week 2012: Same great content, easier to find freebies
February 11, 2012 | 1:40 pm

Read an E-Book Week 2012Read an E-Book Week has updated its new website for 2012. Designed by myself, a longtime supporter of REBW (and why not? Web design is my day job), the REBW12 site provides the same great content about ebooks, plus an easier-to-navigate design and easier access to specials and freebies. This year's big news is, of course, the recognition of the Read an E-Book Program by the Canadian Parliament by passing a motion declaring the entire month of March Read an E-Book Month! Other parts of the site have been updated as well, including information about the ebook market, links leading to...

Ryerson U closes 1 of 2 bookstores; feelings are mixed
February 10, 2012 | 9:26 am

That's the take from this Toronto Star article: Mixed feelings about the loss of a bookstore at Ryerson University and the sequestering of its books, by the students... though not by the article's author. "Poor books. Snubbed yet again, this time by a university, an institution of learning." The article describes the closure of one campus bookstore, causing confusion by students who walked into the building to find it being repurposed as classroom and office space.  Some of the books were moved to the other campus bookstore; the remainder were put into a storage room, and some will be returned to the...

Paramount to Law Professors: Let’s Talk About Copyright Infringement
February 9, 2012 | 10:33 am

In a slightly odd reaction to the public anti-SOPA backlash, movie studio Paramount has decided to try to open a dialogue discussing copyright infringement.  The odd part is that they chose law professors to dialogue with.  Details are in the article from the Chronicle of Higher Education. The article suggests that the strategy of talking to law professors, as opposed to tech experts (or, possibly, average students) will not result in anything useful: “I don’t understand why, if they truly wanted to engage consumers, they would approach law professors, especially those at the most elite schools,” Mr. Goldman wrote in an e-mail...

Read an E-book Week is now a MONTH! (in Canada)
December 15, 2011 | 9:56 am

Sent to me by Rita Toews, founder of Read an E-book Week—she has lobbied the Canadian government, with fantastic results: Great news! By virtue of an Order by the 41st Parliament of Canada, First Session, Motion M-293 was passed declaring the month of March Read an E-Book Month! The Order reads: That, in the opinion of the House, the government should: (a) recognize that the ePublishing industry has created economic opportunities for entrepreneurs, authors, publishers and e-reader manufacturers; (b) recognize that e-books present significant benefits for seniors and children; (c) recognize that e-books are an environmentally-friendly alternative to books; (d) declare the...

In the 21st-Century University, Let’s Ban Books
November 16, 2011 | 9:15 am

This is the title of a Chronicle of Higher Education commentary by Marc Prensky, in which he suggests the first university to literally replace all books with electronic readers and ebooks will make history and usher in a new era of education. Why, in a world in which choice and personal preference are highly valued, would any college want to create such a mandate? Because it makes a bold statement about the importance of moving education into the future. It is, in a sense, only a step removed from saying, "We no longer accept theses on scrolls, papyrus, or clay tablets....

‘Princeton Shorts’ Tries to Lure Readers With Digital Excerpts From Full Books
November 2, 2011 | 9:09 am

From The Chronicle of Higher Education: Attention spans are short. E-readers are plentiful. Digital delivery is fast and convenient. How can university presses turn those facts to their advantage and attract readers who want bite-sized morsels of content? Princeton University Press is about to test one approach with a new, e-only series. Called Princeton Shorts, it debuts November 9. The article explains that Princeton Shorts will not be new material, like Kindle Singles; rather, it will be excerpts only of backlist material from Princeton University Press.  The full books will be available through Kindle and Google Books. Princeton University Press considers this an experiment,...

Self-publishing rewrites conventions of writing: Sex
October 25, 2011 | 9:56 am

Despite Our ShadowsDespite Our Shadows is a revised re-release of an earlier title of mine, Lambs Hide, Tigers Seek, a noir mystery. Shadows is one of the sexiest stories I've written so far, and when I originally wrote it, I was concerned that the story would be too sexy for mainstream consumption. So I intentionally toned it down and put some of the more racy scenes through the "fade to morning" filter, allowing the reader to fill in the blanks. But when it came for the rewrite, I rethought the idea of editing out or glossing over the sex scenes. Though it may...

Writing vs the Lottery: Which is better for everyone?
August 13, 2011 | 10:33 am

Some online comments I read recently made a point about the potential success of the indie ebook writer: The odds of becoming a successful indie ebook writer (and by "successful," I mean earning a significant income from ebooks) is actually lower than your chances of winning the lottery. Once I got past the depressing implication of that statement, I started thinking about it practically, to wit: If I had the choice of either writing or playing the lottery, which would be better for me... and for everyone in general? Sure, it sounds on its surface like a silly question, but consider this:...