Scribd Presents More Opportunities for Publishers With E-Commerce Channel Launch
"We are thrilled to be partnering with Scribd to bring Lonely Planet information and advice to a new set of travelers on a tailored basis," says Matt Goldberg, CEO, Lonely Planet Publications. "Our goal is to empower travelers to get to the heart of a place, whether they choose a guidebook, a mobile application or a digital chapter from Scribd."
Since the Scribd Store announcement earlier this week, Fitzgerald already has noticed increased interest from book publishers. "… We've definitely noticed an uptick," she says, "especially in the medium-sized and small publishers."
As with any digital file sharing and selling, copyright infringement is a concern for many publishers. "We are definitely [Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA)] compliant," says Fitzgerald. "And we've gone above and beyond and created a copyright management system (CMS)," which helps to prevent the upload of unauthorized works onto the site.
If a document is removed from Scribd because it was uploaded without authorization, a "unique digital fingerprint" of that file is created and added to the CMS, Fitzgerald explains. Scribd users also may proactively add documents to the CMS to ensure that they are not uploaded illegally. All documents uploaded to Scribd are compared against the CMS, and if an official copy of a document already exists in the CMS, future uploads from other sources will not be allowed.
Additionally, publishers and other users may sign up for alerts based on, for instance, a certain phrase or book title. If a document is uploaded containing the words specified in the alert, an email is automatically sent to the alert subscriber to notify them.
As with other user-generated sites, such as YouTube, the burden does ultimately lie on the copyright holder to patrol the Scribd site for possible infringement. One publisher, who had discovered more than eight of his titles illegally uploaded to Scribd, recently contacted Book Business to express frustration that the onus is on the publisher to police the Web, and specifically Scribd.