eBooks: With Courage and Patience, We Are Getting There

Just how do we make the "e" in e-books stand for "easier"? Well, how about this? Let's scrap the existing digital rights management. Instead everybody in charge of administering DRM would be re-trained overnight as digital priests. They would certify "trustworthiness" to those seeking to download e-books.

Before downloads, customers would be visited by digital priests of their respective religious persuasions. With great pomp and circumstance, they would "pledge" not to forward their books to everybody in the world without compensating the authors and publishers. Break the pledge, and you'd find yourself in purgatory, hand-copying old encyclopedias.

Or maybe a totalitarian law would work instead. First-offenders guilty of unlawful content reproduction would have to wear a scratchy wool eye patch for one year. For a second crime, the patch would be now a mask. We could set up toll-free hot-lines and reward people for spying on their neighbors.

The Real Point

See my real point here? No easy way exists to loosen the DRM grip--this complicated issue can't be addressed with good old-fashioned guilt and fear. But e-book standards for DRM and formats would help. I am counting on the laws of capitalism, which always prevail. A demand will eventually be met with supply, and I'm hoping that the right set of standard will break from the pack and simplify the digital content landscape. That will be a blessed day. Microsoft, Adobe and Palm and the others now have their own special technology fee tacked on to the price of e-books. And that complicates merchandising. We e-book merchants would rather not have multiple cost structures for the same e-book.

Nor do we like consumers to be limited to books published in their chosen format or suffer multiple technologies just to enjoy a story. Nothing is more frustrating than having three different libraries on your handheld and forgetting where your recent fiction resides. I don't just hear customers complaints--I myself own a handheld.

Villains not

Who's to blame? I'm thinking nobody. Many authors and publishers break out in a cold sweat at just the mention of the word "Napster" and can you blame them? Their livelihood is at stake. They should, however, strive to better satisfy consumers desire for more content in digital form.

If a publisher has faith in their work, it's now accepted that expanding to e-book will deliver extra profit and drive hardback sales. Not all understand this. I still hear some authors express misguided fear that e-books will cannibalize their hardback sales. Publishing is not a zero-sum game, however--and that actually can be good. E-books add incremental value to the equation. Granted, companies tasked with encrypting content for them are an easy target, for they create the hoops through which we must jump. But the DRM heavyweights like Microsoft, Adobe and eReader are simply business people satisfying a need with existing technology.

No glass chin

Let there be no mistake, the future is bright for e-books--sales are on a steady rise. The industry took a couple of jabs during the Internet correction, but you'll find no glass chin here. More students are beginning to see e-books as an alternative for those pricey hardback textbooks. The computer savvy are learning the ease in pasting code directly from their favorite Java e-book manual, and there's even speculation that men are reading more romance as they no longer fear being seen with a floral book cover. Moreover, the Tablet PC is maturing, and the publishers are slowly but surely putting even more content in digital form. It takes courage, but we're getting there. Though it is a word often used in excuses, "patience" is needed by digital downloaders, me included.

Article by L. Scott Redford - scott@diesel-ebooks.com Scott is the President of Diesel eBooks with over 35,000 popular and professional eBooks organized by 50 categories. Visit the free download section at http://www.diesel-ebooks.com

In The News:


NPR (blog)

Book News: Young Adult And Kids' Lit Boost E-Book Revenue
NPR (blog)
E-book sales are standing on the shoulders not of giants, but of a much smaller set. According to new statistics released by the Association of American Publishers, the first seven months of 2014 showed marked growth in e-book revenue — largely thanks ...

and more »

Does the Closure of Atavist Books Signal the End of Enhanced Ebooks?
Digital Book World
Was last week's announcement of the closure of multi-platform book publisher Atavist Books the beginning of the final death knell for enhanced books? Hardly. This is a death rattle that's apparently been dragging out for twenty years. At least that's ...


3100 Washington County library users try new e-book app during first month
The Oregonian - OregonLive.com
Though library system members could already access e-books through the Oregon Digital Library Consortium's Library2Go program, the 3M Could Library app gave them access to an expanded collection that could be downloaded on more devices.


Piracy clouds e-books' growing popularity
VietNamNet Bridge
VietNamNet Bridge – Electronic books (e-books) have gradually won the hearts of frequent readers, particularly bookworms in large cities of Viet Nam, but piracy remains a problem. Nguyen Hung Sang, a self-confessed bookworm and an employee of an ...

and more »

Barrington Courier-Review

Barrington-based Page Foundry creates unique, e-book digital storefronts
Barrington Courier-Review
After he and his colleagues sold their wireless company in 2009, McFarland decided to take a step into the emerging e-book industry. “Interestingly, that was just a few months after the very first Kindle was launched into the market,” he said. “When ...


Top Ten Best-Selling Ebooks -- Week of October 25
Huffington Post
Penelope Ward's Stepbrother Dearest remains inside the top ten, scooting up a couple of places into the No. 4 spot this week. And Deborah Bladon, who saw one of her self-published titles on last week's list, now lands three books within the top 25.

and more »

E-Books vs. Print Books for Toddlers
New York Times
In answer to the headline's question, “Is E-Reading to Your Toddler Story Time, or Simply Screen Time?,” the answer is obvious. It is screen time. If the tablet has Clifford the dog barking, then your child doesn't have to imagine the sound of Clifford ...


Cult of Mac

Freebie Wednesday: Get Mac apps, ebooks and training for free [Deals]
Cult of Mac
Every one loves free stuff, just like the free stuff you can find every day at Cult of Mac Deals. There's some seriously awesome stuff available to you right now. Learn how to make a game for iPhone. Listen to an audiobook of a New York Times Bestseller.


Lewisboro Library Teaches Residents How To Download eBooks On Kindles
The Daily Voice
LEWISBORO, N.Y. -- Lewisboro Library is holding two events in November focusing on how to use Kindle and Kindle Fire devices to download free eBooks. Learn how to use your Kindle Fire to download free eBooks on Saturday, Nov. 1. at 11 a.m. Kindle Fire ...


Do Readers Really Prefer Their Dusty Old Paperbacks To E-Books? The E-Book ...
Forbes
Today, 23 percent of all male adults and 33 percent of all female adults in the United States read e-books. In fact, the global e-book industry is worth a whopping $8.5 billion. This still pales in comparison to global print's $53.9 billion so it's ...

Google News

More Than An Ebook

The following in an excerpt from the E-Book of the... Read More

Information at What Price? Exploring Fee-based e-Content

In pursuit of a paid model for content, many businesses... Read More

Internet Marketing - How to Write Your Own E-book

I tell you now the first e-book I ever wrote... Read More

Top Ten Tips To Get Started Writing Your Book - Part 2

You are far more likely to successfully write and publish... Read More

7 Secrets to Explode your eBook Sales! Part 5

Secret #5: How to build steady sales for years to... Read More

Using Ebooks As A Highly Effective Marketing & Promotional Tool

Ebooks are part of the new frontier of cyberspace. They... Read More

My Rich Mums Ebook Secrets

As usual, I walked into the Starbucks for my morning... Read More

10 Steps to Author 1 eBook

Authoring a book, specifically an eBook (electronic book), is easy,... Read More

Electronic Books And Magazines Can Be Among Your Cost Effective Servicing Tools

Electronic servicing is, as they say, a "growth industry". With... Read More

Ebooks Are The BEST Form Of Advertising!

Ebooks are part of the new frontier of cyberspace. They... Read More

How To Create Your Own Info Product

In the last article we talked about why informational products... Read More

The True Purpose of a Tips Booklet

"My topic doesn't fit into a how-to tips format."That comment... Read More

Resell Rights Power

The Quickest Way To Have A Product To Sell On... Read More

10 Excuses for NOT Authoring an eBook!

Most people at one time or another have said to... Read More

Rapid Knowledge Development for Businesses

When there is little time to go to the local... Read More

Top Ten Tips To Get Started Writing Your Book - Part 1

You are far more likely to successfully write and publish... Read More

10 Ways To Make Money With eBooks

Ask any internet marketing "guru" and they will tell you... Read More

Shorten Your Journey to Book Success with Teleclasses - Part 2

Are you an author who wants your book to be... Read More

Write Your eBook - 6 Great Ways to Find the Time

Busy! Busy! Busy!What's new? And who isn't busy?The majority of... Read More

Shorten Your Journey to Book Success with Teleclasses - Part 1

Are you an author who wants your book to be... Read More

This Simple Publishing Mistake Could Be Losing You Half Your Back End Sales!

Many of the Internets biggest ebook sellers are making this... Read More

How eBooks Can Be Very Valuable

EBooks have a number of benefits over the traditional book.... Read More

20 Questions To Ask Before Creating An eBook

1. What will be the title of your ebook and... Read More

5 Guaranteed Ways To Snowball Your Resale Right Profits

Resale Right Products are a huge market. Unfortunately, may people... Read More

The Kolbrin ? Ancient Warnings of Modern Threats

The Kolbrin is a substantial Biblical-era wisdom text of immense... Read More