Ingram Offers Transition Option as Microsoft Live Search Books Ends
“We worked with Microsoft in a variety of ways to support their evangelism of the usefulness of discovery, which we completely agreed with,” says Daniels. “There were lots of commonalities in the views of the world between Microsoft and Ingram, in which we thought that the more books that were discoverable on all different platforms, the more commercial publishers would be able to sell and the happier customers would be. We were thrilled to participate with Microsoft in that process.
“We weren’t part of Microsoft’s decision to change their business priorities,” Daniels continues. “They made a decision that their priorities around business and search needed to change. For them, the investment in a book search vertical was not as important as other many important things. … They love books; [however,] a book search vertical just did not make sense for their strategy. However, for us, it is our business. We’re all about helping book publishers achieve their goals.”
Daniels says that both Microsoft and Ingram are communicating with participating publishers to inform them of the transition. “We will send out a communication to publishers that will tell them how the process is going to work to return [their digital] files [to them],” he says. “We’re talking … tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of titles that need to be managed and pushed back out to 1,100 different publishers. So it’s a process that will take up to several months to get all the files returned and sorted in a way that they will not be lost. That’s the most important thing: … If the publisher wants to retrieve those files, we want to make sure that they’re available. So we’re managing that process. That’s the main thing we’re trying to do.”
“Another opportunity for Microsoft may be to focus on content areas that have potential for electronic salability, since the scans initally created for searchability are not necessarily of salable quality,” says Brenneman. “There is an opportunity for Microsoft, in partnership with Ingram of course, to increase the volume of truly salable e-book content.