The Right to Resell Ebooks — Major Case Looms in The Netherlands
June 30, 2014

A major lawsuit is about to take place in the Netherlands, dragging the issue of the resale of digital media back into European courts.

On Tuesday this week, a local startup called Tom Kabinet opened the virtual doors on its secondhand ebook bookstore. At the moment, it is generally accepted that ebooks cannot be resold, as is the case with music, movies and other digital media.

However, Tom Kabinet is pointing to a 2012 ruling by Europe's top court, the Court of Justice of the European Union, in the case of UsedSoft v Oracle.

Amazon Faces Profit Pressure: Honeymoon Over?
April 28, 2014's sales were up 23% in its first quarter of 2014, but it seemed to be profits that its stockholders were looking for this time around. Shareholders had previously been able to ignore the fact that they were paying a premium for a stock in a company that had skimpy or no profits at all. Instead, they could point to the healthy rate of growth that Amazon kept displaying. But profitability seemed to rear its head in the stock market's reaction to this year's first quarter. Amazon's shares were down nearly 10%

Who Can Rival Amazon?
January 22, 2014

Recently my friend Mike Shatzkin asked me to participate in a panel on Amazon at Digital Book World. Mike asked all the panelists a question that I want to attempt to answer at greater length than I was able to at the conference. The question was in two parts:  first, how much more market share can Amazon amass before it slows down or is stopped? Second, who can put together a meaningful merchandising service that could take share from Amazon?

Amazon Broadens Its Computing Reach
February 22, 2012

Attention tech industry: is coming for you. Amazon Web Services, the company’s computing-for-hire division, announced new products on Tuesday that make it easier to run workflow-based applications, both on Amazon’s computers and on corporate machines that are connected to Amazon’s giant computing cloud. This is a cheap (and probably easy) way for in-house engineers to build and deploy software that does tasks like analytics and billing, or internal financial operations and decision-making. It can even aid in the design logic of multiplayer games, Amazon says. This is a big deal, because it shows AWS moving more decisively into

Publisher Claims Ownership of Time-Zone Data
October 7, 2011

The publisher of a database chronicling historical time-zone data is claiming copyright ownership of those facts, and is suing two researchers for re-purposing it in a free-to-use database relied on by millions of computers. The data, which basically spells out past and future times anywhere in the world, is used in Java, Linux, PostgreSQL, Oracle and other programs to assign the correct time based on geographic location.

Solutions Showcase: Fulfilling Your Core Competencies
April 16, 2008

With the U.S. economy on shaky ground, book publishers, like so many others, are honing in on ways to cut costs while growing their businesses. This often means tapping the resources of thirdparty partners to manage the aspects of the publishing business that fall outside the publisher’s core competencies (creating and marketing great content)—things like physically managing inventory and fulfilling orders from retail partners and consumers. For fulfillment help, publishers may turn to their book printers, which often have warehousing and fulfillment operations to complement their manufacturing services, or to a third-party fulfillment specialist. Location, Location, Location Direct-mailers will tell you that minimizing mail

Gene Therapy: From Book Proposal to Profit
January 1, 2008

Chris Anderson’s ironic farewell to the retail bookshelf is a harbinger of how direct distribution in the supply chain is bypassing the traditional foundations of bookselling—as well as library patronage­—and is also flowing into nonprint formats. But while that transformation is nibbling around the edges of distribution, the fact remains that the book publishing industry’s supply chain model has as its primary target a physical book on a physical bookshelf. In this special two-part series, I want to discuss how digital data management drives workflow through the operations, acquisitions, development, production and distribution supply chain; in particular, how use of the Online Information Exchange

The Media Services Group Buys the Cat’s Pajamas
January 28, 2007

The Media Services Group (MSGL), a leading provider of integrated publishing and event management software, has acquired The Cat’s Pajamas, developer of the Cat’s Pajamas book publishing system. Terms of the acquisition, which closed on Jan. 24, provide for the maintenance of The Cat’s Pajamas offices and staff in Burlington, Wash. as a division of MSGL. MSGL currently owns, sells and supports two other book publishing software applications, BookWorks and CISPUB. “To be number one in this market you need to have great software, great customers, great support and great people,” said Jeff Shine, president and CEO of The Media Services Group. “The Cats acquisition

Stow It
January 1, 2001

What to consider when shopping for a digital achive system Special to BookTech by Danny O. Snow Today's publishers need effective solutions for securely and efficiently storing the digital assets. Of course, there are many important factors to consider when selecting a digital asset management (DAM) system: cost, ease of use, security, scalability, available features and online capabilities. In addition, a DAM solution's ability to enhance cross-media publishing; provide both in-house and vendor access to the digital assets; and interpreting legacy files can play an important role in a publisher's success. Finally, a publisher must weigh in-house asset management against the out-sourcing alternative.

Shoot The Cake, And Eat It Too
September 1, 2000

What if you had exactly three minutes to make a perfect picture -- well, good enough to eat -- before the garnish wilted, ice cream melted and the chicken breast turned gray? Indeed, art directors and photographers who work on cookbooks have their work cut out for them. But there's a payoff. They often get to eat the food they shoot -- if they don't mind, of course, that the strawberry shortcake spends a few minutes on the set first. Food photography So what do art directors and photographers do to make the image leap off the page and entice the reader's aesthetic senses? Traditionally, the tricks used