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Morning Roundup: Kindle Smartphones, Logging into WiFi With Facebook, Digital Reading Innovations, Tom Clancy Has Died
October 3, 2013 | 9:00 am

[caption id="attachment_97753" align="alignright" width="206"] Author Tom Clancy[/caption] Tom Clancy Has Died (GalleyCat) Bestselling novelist Tom Clancy has passed away, ending a legendary career in espionage fiction. *** I Believe We Will See a Kindle Smartphone Sooner Rather than Later (The Digital Reader) Rumors have been circulating for well over a year now that Amazon is working on a smartphone. I’m not sure how many of the rumors true or even vaguely accurate but I do think that even the untrue rumors are circling around a real product. *** Soon, Your Facebook Credentials Could Log You Into Wifi Networks (GigaOM) Cisco and Facebook have built a Wi-Fi technology that...

Oxygen and Clean Eating Magazine to Rise Again
September 24, 2013 | 2:15 pm

I wrote in June about the closure of CANUSA, the parent company of the magazines [easyazon-link asin="B0078XPR46" locale="us"]Oxygen[/easyazon-link] and Clean Eating. At the time, then-owner Tosca Reno attributed the closure to changes in the industry and to the death of her husband, founder Robert Kennedy. She suggested she was looking for other solutions to bring these magazines back, and it seems she's been successful: several outlets are reporting that Active Interest Media has acquired these titles and Reno assured readers via Facebook that all subscriptions would be honoured. Good news for magazine lovers!...

Morning Roundup: Goodreads announces new policy, Intern bill of rights; more
September 23, 2013 | 10:25 am

Goodreads Announces New Policy: Now Deletes Reviews Which Mention Author Behaviour (The Digital Shift) Goodreads has long been struggling to decide between the opposing needs of reader/reviewers and of authors, and today the latter group has finally won out. *** Firms Sign on to 'Intern Bill of Rights' Amid Ongoing Unpaid Labour Fights (GigaOM) InternMatch, a start-up that helps students find internships, is calling on companies to sign a “Bill of Rights’ that promises fair treatment and paid or meaningful work. Some big names are signing on. *** Digital is New Salvation for European Newspapers (GoodeReader) European newspapers have often been shielded by the same issues plaguing...

Morning Roundup: Facebook ‘likes’ and the first amendment; E-readers ‘more effective’ for some dyslexic readers; more
September 20, 2013 | 8:42 am

Cloud Customers Have Bigger Worries than NSA Gate (GigaOM) Nirvanix’ fast shutdown spooks current and would-be cloud storage customers more than the prospect of government spying. At least for now. *** Questions (and Answers) from the Society of Scholarly Publishing (The Scholarly Kitchen) Consider today’s post a bit of shameless self-promotion if you will, but at last summer’s SSP meeting many attendees were shanghaied into a side room and asked about their experiences and thoughts on scholarly publishing. The results are below: *** Yes, a Facebook 'Like' is Protected by the First Amendment (Techdirt) Last year we wrote about a troubling case, in which a district court...

‘Find my family’ posts use Facebook to spread the word
August 10, 2013 | 2:27 pm

cassandradoptedPublishing and publicizing are related words. They both mean “to make public,” in their way. They intersect in the self-published e-book world, but they can intersect in other ways as well. There are some Facebook photos making the rounds lately of people who are trying to find missing loved ones. They post a photo of themselves holding a whiteboard with their message. This young solder writes: My name is Casandra Skaife. I am currently serving overseas and today is my 21st birthday! I’m not looking for a drink, I’m just looking for my birth parents....

How to Roll Out Laptops in Schools
July 29, 2013 | 4:45 pm

laptopsMediaShift has an interesting write-up about a school district in Massachusetts that's grappling with how to best roll out laptops in its schools. The article talks about the program in Natick, Mass., which involved issuing Macbooks to all students in grades eight through 12. The results have been great for students—they've spent their time "doing everything from conversing with peers in Costa Rica through Twitter in a history class, to designing and producing their own online magazines." But it hasn't been so great for the IT department employees, who've spent their time trying to reinstall content filters after students worked very...

YouVersion puts the Bible on your smartphone or tablet
July 28, 2013 | 10:43 am

you-Version-BiblesSunday morning seems like an appropriate time to mention this story. The New York Times has taken notice of YouVersion, a free social-networking-enabled e-Bible application for mobile devices. Built by evangelical megachurch LifeChurch.tv, the application is a non-denominational electronic Bible with access to hundreds of translations in hundreds of languages, including the NIV. The article covers a lot of themes we’ve talked about in relation to other e-book initiatives. For example, the value of free: “We have a generation of people that can’t fathom paying 99 cents for a song that they love,” [YouVersion...

Weekend Roundup: Digital rights protection and the future of writing
June 30, 2013 | 10:52 am

Weekend Roundup3 Reasons Why Facebook Can't Replace Your Author Website (Jane Friedman) I’ve occasionally been asked by authors at conferences: Why not just use Facebook? Isn’t that where everyone is spending their time already? Why would people visit my site? Why bother with all the effort of establishing a site, which, if it becomes dusty or out-of-date, could be more damaging than no website at all? * * * Digital rights protection and the future of writing (The Guardian) SiDiM, an ingenious new rights protections system, may point the way to the experimental literature of the future. Germany's FraunhoferInstitute recently revealed that it is working on a new digital...

Weekend Roundup: Quick-to-market e-books are now the norm, not the exception
June 29, 2013 | 10:46 am

Weekend RoundupQuick-To-Market Ebooks Now Norm, Not Exception (Forbes) What made ["Linsanity"] by sportswriter Alan Goldsher from digital publishing house and platform Vook so shocking was that it took less than six days to write (72 hours), produce (36 hours) and publish (less than 24 hours). * * * Richard Russo Gives E-Publishing A Try (NPR) Richard Russo, the writer who won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for his book Empire Falls, published a new novel six months ago. If you're wondering how you missed it, it might be because Russo chose not to publish with a traditional publisher. * * * Mother of teen jailed for Facebook post speaks to WSWS...

Does Sir Martin Sorrell’s pipes argument hold water?
June 21, 2013 | 11:00 am

Sir Martin SorrellSir Martin Sorrell, Chief Executive of WPP, "the world's largest communications services group," was quoted a short time ago in a video interview in The Guardian filmed at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, castigating—by implication—Google, Yahoo! and Facebook, for not owning up to their position as media rather than technology companies. "I can remember the first  Cannes debate that I did here about five years ago, we had someone from Google, Yahoo!, Facebook and AOL ... The first question I asked them ... was: Are you a technology company, or a media company? To which they all answered, and...

Amazon is Making it Easier to Give Facebook Friends a Birthday Gift
June 20, 2013 | 1:00 pm

AmazonStarting today, you can show your Facebook friends how much you love them, by giving them an Amazon gift card, and you can show them how well you can rally your friends by getting more people to contribute to the gift. The basic idea is that you can select a gift amount for a friend’s upcoming birthday and then invite friends to “pitch in” to add to the amount. The entire amount will post to the friend’s timeline on their birthday. Voila! All right. Neat idea, but I’ve got concerns. I wasn’t a fan of Facebook’s introduction of a gifting feature. It...

Morning Roundup: 19 Books You’ve Been Meaning to Read Forever
June 17, 2013 | 9:03 am

Morning Roundup19 Books You've Been Meaning to Read Forever (Book Riot) A little while ago, we asked you to confess the books you’ve always wanted to read but just never seem to get around to. You know, the ones that stare at you from atop your TBR pile and cause you endless readerly guilt. 358 readers answered the call, listing 383 unique titles. A handful of books came up A LOT, and a lot of books came up only once. Here are the top 19 books Riot readers have been meaning to read forever. --- Oxford English Dictionary Adds 'Tweet' and 'Crowdsourcing' (GalleyCat) The Oxford English...