De Marque acquires Feedbook assets including the Feedbook digital books catalogue for $0.25 million, taking De Marque to 1.4 million titles

Paying just 230,000 euros (US$ 254,000) for the assets of the collapsed ebook store Feedbooks, the Canadian digital distributor De Marque has at a stroke just added 900,00 titles to its catalogue. There’s more to this story than at first meets the eye, so let me start with, at some length, the upbeat press release Read More …

OverDrive’s Sora digital reading app for schools had 5.5 million checkouts in its first year, and saw reading time double in six months

This is a remarkable story that blows apart the faux narratives that smartphones are destroying the reading habit and that kids don’t read digitally. Yes, of course kids love printed books, and long may they continue, but printed books have production and distribution costs as well as practical issues of accessibility (everything from fixed font Read More …

IPA announces first ever Middle East Publishing Seminar for September, with a strong focus on digital

“Read. Empower. Transform: The role of reading for the future of the Arab world” is the title of a newly announced two-day IPA (International Publishers Association) Regional Seminar that will be taking place in the Jordanian capital Amman Sept 30-Oct 1. Organised in conjunction with the Union of Jordanian Publishers the event, described as “the Read More …

India’s Coimbatore Book Fair launches amid more nonsense about how social media and smartphones are killing the reading habit. It really is time publishers took the blinkers off

Summer is a quiet time in the Indian book fair scene, with the mega-events that attract millions of visitors tending to cluster around winter-spring, but there are some exceptions, and one is kicking off tomorrow, July 19. Organised by the Coimbatore District Small Industries Association (CODISSIA) and the Booksellers and Publishers Association of South India Read More …

OverDrive’s Sora app sees 240% increase in reading when school digital libraries connect to public libraries. A lesson in giving consumers choice

At the American Library Association Annual Meeting this month digital library content facilitator Rakuten OverDrive revealed a statistic that bears out a simple truth in any format: More choice of books means more reader engagement. The numbers are startling. Ebook and audiobook reading increased over 240% when students connected their Sora classroom reading app to their local Read More …

In advance of the IPA Africa Regional Seminar StreetLib announces plans for a Pan-African Digital Library Hub

StreetLib is the publisher behind The New Publishing Standard, and while TNPS is not a StreetLib promotional vehicle and we don’t routinely carry StreetLib news, StreetLib’s global expansion clearly falls within the TNPS global publishing industry news remit. As ever on such occasions, we re-print the StreetLib Press Release in full below without further TNPS commentary. Read More …

OverDrive’s Summer Read incentivises kids to read in the summer break, but elsewhere some stubbornly insist if it’s not ink on paper it’s not real reading

Teachers invariably view the long summer break from school with mixed feelings. A chance to relax and recharge the batteries on the one hand. On the other, knowing that some of the progress made in the previous academic year will be undone as many children will have fewer opportunities to read. It’s not a problem Read More …

Ka-Pow! Marvel partners with Dreamscape to produce superhero audiobooks from classic Marvel comics

Variety reports this week that Marvel Entertainment has partnered with Dreamscape Media to turn some classic comic titles into audiobooks. If you’e thinking that’s a bit like trying to put a square peg in a round hole, join the club. But no, it’s not April 1st and it does seem this is for real. Dreamscape Read More …

With the “attention economy” the latest buzzword excuse for perceived falling book sales, how is it Scandinavia is seeing both video and book streaming rise simultaneously?

The rise and rise of audiobook and ebook subscription streaming across the Scandinavian countries has been mentioned here at TNPS so often it hardly needs rehearsing again. But this week the tremendous interest in digital reading in northwest Europe takes on new significance as we learn that video-streaming is still rising in these same countries, Read More …

In a bizarre twist in the Storytel-Bonnier dispute, both companies say they are winners and are earning more without the other

It’s so counterintuitive it needs to be read twice, but in the battle between Sweden’s biggest streaming service, Storytel, and Sweden’s biggest publisher Bonnier, which also happens to own Sweden’s second biggest streaming outfit, Bookbeat, it seems both companies are making more money by having less content available. But is that the full story, is Read More …

Storytel to gift its VAT bonus to publishers, quelling disquiet about royalties under the new pay per minute system

When Jonas Tellander announced Storytel’s plan to moved from a fixed rate payout for publishers to a per-minute-consumed model there was understandable disquiet from publishers, many of whom believed the new model would see their revenue streams cut. And of course some did. Under the old model a one-hour podcast would earn as much for Read More …

StreetLib completes Pan-African digital footprint. Launches a publisher portal for every nation in Africa. 800m Africans online by 2025

Italy-based digital books distributor and publishing facilitator StreetLib has completed the third stage of its global roll-out, and now offers an author and publisher portal for every nation in Africa. The New Publishing Standard (TNPS) is published by StreetLib to further the debate about the global book markets. TNPS is not a StreetLib promotion tool. Read More …

Digital serial books subscription service Serial Box raises $4.5 million. Partners with Marvel. But still we’ll be told people are reading less

Founded in 2015 by former Penguin Random House global digital director Molly Barton and co-founder Julian Yap, Serial Box is just one more example in a never ending list of digital operators that are stealing readers from mainstream bookstores and online stores, creating the fallacy that people are reading less. Serial Box is a clever play on Read More …

Rakuten OverDrive adds Marvel Comics to Marketplace

Just weeks before Avengers: Endgame hits the big screen, and with the Oscars success of Black Panther and Into the Spider-Verse fresh in the public mind, Rakuten’s digital library distributor OverDrive has added Marvel Comics to its Marketplace, meaning any of the available titles can be made available to any partner library and can be read on the Libby app. Read More …

India’s Kolkata International Book Fair sees 700,000 spend $1.1 million in first five days, despite free ebooks available

“Book fair rakes in Rs 8 crore with 7 lakh footfall ” is the headline in the Times of India this week, reporting on the first five days of the Kolkata International Book Fair. The Indian notation equates to 700,000 visitors at the event up until Monday, spending over 80 million rupees ($1.1 million) on Read More …

In 2018 750,000 digital book downloads a day went uncounted by Nielsen Bookscan and Data Guy’s BookStat, fuelling the nonsense that people are reading less

Regulars here at TNPS will not have been surprised that Rakuten OverDrive last year surpassed the quarter billion download mark, serving 274 million digital books to eager consumers through its global library distribution service. While the USA is by far the bigger client country of OverDrive we should remember that the company delivers digital books Read More …

El Salvador gets its first digital library

Times change and you have to adapt to them, reports PublishNewsES, and in the tiny Central American republic of El Salvador the libraries have finally began to embrace the internet. The House of Culture of Metapán, PublishNewsES explains, was, one of the ten first Houses of Culture that were founded in the country in 1973 Read More …

Myanmar telco Ooredoo to boost country’s digital libraries

Myanmar, with a population of 53 million, may be at only 33% internet penetration, but that’s still 18 million people online. That’s 2 million more people online than the Netherlands, six million more people online than Romania, and twice the online population of Sweden, all of which have vibrant digital book markets. Myanmar’s digital potential Read More …

Dubai Audio Library “the largest Arabic audio library in the world”

Launched by Dubai’s Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Dubai Audio Library seeks to help the 7 million visually impaired people in the Arab world. It’s an initiative, reports Nasher News, undertaken by the RTA in collaboration with the website Bookshare.org. The Library is a volunteering platform for supporting seven Read More …

Nigeria’s would-be pan-African ebook and music distributor Publiseer adds Cloud Library to its distribution reach

It’s not even a year and a half since twins Chidi and Chika Nwaogu, one an author, the other a musician, launched Publiseer in their native Nigeria. Since then, as TNPS regulars will know, Publiseer has launched portals in Ghana, Kenya and South Africa, all the time expanding its distribution outlets. Last month it was Read More …