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On Ebooks: Pricing & Quality, Amazon & Streaming, Org Changes, Social Reading, Ownership & More

During discussions around ebooks at the PublishingNext conference, one question from Arunava Sinha, who - apart from being the Head of ibnlive.com & cricketnext.com at Web 18 - is also a translator of classic and contemporary Bengali fiction, wasn't quite entirely answered - "What can be the argument against having digitized ebook versions of each publication?" Lipika Bhushan, Head of Marketing at Harper Collins India did say that it is not about not knowing how to digitize books, but about contractual issues. "Till the time we were signing contracts two years ago, we didn't have digtization of books in the contract. If we start digitizing our backlist, we have to go back to the author, and it's a time consuming task," she said, to which Sinha responded ""the readers will not wait." And he's right: Books publishing isn't the only industry facing this problem - the music industry has been going through years of issues with dealing with "future rights". The listener did not wait for the music industry, and the reader will not wait for publishers to sort their contracts out. Some notes on ebooks from the conference: - Mistakes About Quality: "The most important lesson to be learned from the US and UK is to not see digital as lesser quality. Publishers didn't like them, and treated them as cheap rubbish products. When ebooks came out - horrible typeset, badly proofed, and now customers already think that ebooks should cost less, and with bad production they devalue it further. we've…

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Written By

Founder @ MediaNama. TED Fellow. Asia21 Fellow @ Asia Society. Co-founder SaveTheInternet.in and Internet Freedom Foundation. Advisory board @ CyberBRICS

MediaNama’s mission is to help build a digital ecosystem which is open, fair, global and competitive.

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