Link Round Up

Want some stuff to read? The internet is happy to oblige.

First: Kobo has announced their Read On initiative, focusing on getting one trillion minutes read on Kobo devices and apps. From their site: Sign up, and tell us the school or community organization you would like to support. For every 10 million-minutes read on Kobo, we will make a contribution of eReading valued between $1,000 and $20,000 to a school or organization in your community. I think this is spiffy. And it makes me curious how many minutes I actually do read!

Second: librarians at BEA discussed the impact of ebooks, and the role of librarians currently. Robin Nesbitt of Columbia Metro Library in Ohio said,

“Right now anybody, any age, any demographic, if you are poor, wealthy, took a shower yesterday or you didn’t, you can walk into the library, pick a book up, and check it out,” she said. “We are starting to have this divide in this country with the haves and the have nots. So, if I can afford an ereader I can get ebooks. If not [you’re out of luck]. And libraries are all about agents of democracy, we are about bridging that gap. … As publishers and librarians that’s even a bigger issue to start thinking about. Does everybody in this country have access?”

Despite the arguments and hurdles that ebooks present, Nesbitt said there remains a positive element at the core, which is that people are “whipped up about reading.”

“What I like about this whole thing is it keeps reading in the forefront of people’s consciousness. Let’s focus on that…. We’ve got people excited about reading…woohoo it’s controversial!” she said.

Third: Dorchester had a booth at BEA, which prompted quite a few comments, including this tweet from Jason Pinter. Later, Ed Champion stopped by the Dorchester booth at BEA and asked some questions

Why hasn’t Dorchester paid its authors, some of whom have been waiting for years?

“No comment.”

How did you cough up the several thousands of dollars for this booth when that money could have gone to paying off an author? (According to BookExpo America, the bare minimum booth size (100 square feet) costs $3,960.)

“No comment.”…

I was then told told that Dorchester is maintaining its commitment to paying its authors. I was given no specifics on how this commitment would be upheld.

What about your vendor LibreDigital? You can’t pay them. So they won’t remove ebook titles that Dorchester doesn’t own? (Because authors are struggling, it’s difficult for them to mobilize on the class action front and uphold their rights.)

“No comment.”

And fourth, in less fractious news, I am over at Kirkus talking about Why Romance Matters:

n romances, the woman’s experience, in every possible permutation, is a major part of the focus of the novel. Romances are valuable because they allow exploration of female experience, which also makes them hard to describe and defend to those who are hell-bent on dismissing and mocking them.

A single romance can connect with a reader’s heart, mind and body, providing emotional recognition, provoking thoughtful debate, and inciting tears and excitement. That is why romance readers are so defensive of our genre—or, at least, I am. The books I love are important to me on a personal level, and the relationship I have with my favorite novels is an intimate one.

What are you reading on the internet this fine day?

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The Link-O-Lator

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