Sir_Philip_Sidney_from_NPGWhat Elizabethan Book Pirates in the 1500s Can Teach Us About Piracy Today (Vox)
Back then, piracy was rampant—and for a simple reason. After the invention of the printing press in 1440, many countries restricted which printers could print which books. In England, Queen Elizabeth I gave certain printers a monopoly over key books like the Bible, the alphabet, almanacs, and other foundational texts.

The TeleRead Take: Plus ca change, right? The conclusion, which I whole-heartedly agree with, was the same then as it is now—to give people legal options to acquire content easily. A little less histrionics and a little more common sense would improve many a ‘piracy’ debate on the internet these days. The picture is of Sir Philip Sidney, author of Arcadia, The Defence of Poesy and other works, whom Vox identifies as “a likely piracy victim.”

Google Keyboard v4.1 Syncs Your Custom Dictionary Across Devices, Removes Some Features (9to5 Google)
Google today released a new version of the official Google Keyboard to the Play Store, most notably bringing along with it dictionary syncing to Google accounts (Apps for Business accounts excluded, it seems) and the ability to access emoji from physical Bluetooth keyboards.

The TeleRead Take: I am not a Google person, but yay for innovation…

Major Publishers Are Screwing Readers with High e-book Prices (GoodeReader)
Publishers setting their own prices on e-books has not only alienated North American readers, but is failing to catch on in international markets. Last year, digital books made up 8% of the consumer book market in France, less than 4% in Germany and Italy, and 1% in Sweden and Norway.

The TeleRead Take: I liked the stats to back up the foreign market info here. If it didn’t work in other countries, why is America not learning a lesson from that? And in a similar vein, posted a day earlier:

No, Readers Have No Obligation to Support a Publisher’s Flawed Model or Bad Decisions (Ink, Bits & Pixels)
I would like to address one argument I hear, namely that traditional publishers have to price their ebooks higher because they have more overhead.

The Teleread Take: As I have said many times before on this blog (and in my comment to Nate) my issue is that if publishers want to charge me a legacy-era price, they should offer me legacy-era quality. As long as I keep finding books from legacy publishers which are not proofread and filled with OCR errors and typos, I will continue to balk at paying ‘full’ price for their products.

E-Fun Nextbook Flexx 2-in-1 Windows 8 Convertibles Launch for $178 And Up (Ink, Bits & Pixels)
Widely known for their incredibly cheap tablets, budget tablet maker E-Fun has launched a couple new dual-purpose Windows 8 tablets with Intel Atom Bay Trail, detachable keyboard docks, and the expected low prices.

The Nextbook Flexx 11 has an 11.6" screen with a resolution of 1366 x 768, while the Nextbook Flexx 10 has a 10.1" screen (1280 x 800). The smaller model has 32GB storage, while the larger model has 64GB. According to the prodcut listing, the 10"model also comes with a free 1-year subscription to Office 365 Personal.

The TeleRead take: Something to use with the appropriate version of the Freda e-reading app? Windows store link here. And, yes, “convertible” means that it comes with a keyboard, so you can use it like a laptop.

Kindle Daily Deal: Quite Contrary (and others)


  1. Elizabethan piracy was nothing like our piracy because in Elizabethan times the creator wasn’t part of the equation since the books were the equivalent of public domain.

    Plus, paper books then were expensive to print and expensive to buy. Today, it costs nothing for some jerk to upload a copyrighted book onto the Internet so the author, publisher, and printer/ distributor are screwed of income.

    The authors, themselves, during the Elizabethan Period were either rewarded by rich patrons who controlled what they wrote or by the Church.

    Publishing new material only became successful financially and socially when the Middle Class gained literacy, income, and free time and international copyright was established to protect authors from the massive theft of their works.

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