Dear librarians, please don’t move away from enabling and encouraging reading

Before I tell librarians what not to do, I begin with the basic (and necessary) background on the author of this article. I am not a librarian, but I have spent two decades of my career as an editor and writer working with librarians and serving their needs—as book review editor at Library Journal, as consultant to ebook vendors serving libraries, as editor of an ALA journal on econtent in libraries, as editor of a book series on information science, and as an active supporter of various initiatives that have to do with books, reading, learning, and libraries.

Next, I want to let you know, dear reader, who may be a librarian, that in this post I will not be naming names of organizations or individuals, embedding links, citing sources, pointing to speeches, or digging up case studies to prove my point. My goal is only this: to express a thought that’s been on my mind for a long time—a thought based on both experience and observation; a thought that, at its very core, celebrates you and your potential. Here goes that thought: Continue reading Dear librarians, please don’t move away from enabling and encouraging reading

Interested in publishing an opinion piece on No Shelf Required? Read on.

No Shelf Required® is an online portal on all things ebooks and econtent and for all reading, writing, publishing, curating, and distributing books and other content in digital format, including authors, editors, publishers, librarians, content developers, distributors, retailers, and educators.

Contributions welcome

In addition to its regular news posts, NSR has recently expanded its coverage to include reviews and opinion pieces written by industry insiders of all walks of life: librarians, publishers, vendors, independent authors, and entrepreneurs, to name a few.  Some creatively draw our attention to the issues (e.g., the ridiculousness of “waits” and “holds” in libraries when patrons check out ebooks), while others offer sobering perspectives on what various statistics tell us about the state of the publishing industry. And this industry includes all who produce, consume, distribute, and curate books in digital formatand not only books but all content, including audiobooks, magazines and newspaper, learning resources, databases, etc.

The goal of each opinion piece (800-1000 words) must be aligned with the mission of the portal: to focus on ideas, discuss trends, point to possible reasons why things are the way they are, and offer solutions to what seems to be holding us back from transforming the world from one that ‘struggles’ with ebooks to the one that fully embraces them. Contributors  address a specific audience as both insiders and outsiders with clear arguments and purpose (please read NSR Mission page for more information on Editor’s vision). Continue reading Interested in publishing an opinion piece on No Shelf Required? Read on.

The truth about paying for news online — hardly anyone wants to do it (but all want quality)

ReutersBad news first: readers do not want to pay for news online. Period. But readers of all ages, including the millennials–the age group closely watched on all things e-content consumption–want their news to come from trusted source.  According to a Reuters poll conducted back in April, 81 percent of the 1240 respondents said that a news brand is synonymous with trusted content but two thirds of them said they wouldn’t pay for any content if available to them online, regardless of who is behind it.

Digiday recently interviewed Reuters commercial director Jeff Perkins on the challenges of news organizations dealing with such findings. The interview may be read here; some more highlights below:

  • the future of how millennials consume news will mostly be influenced by virtual reality, wearable devices, and artificial intelligence
  • the reports of “the homepage” being dead or dying have been greatly exaggerated
  • the millennials consume most news via social media, particularly Facebook, followed by LinkedIn and Twitter

Also recommended reading on the subject of news publishers’ survival: As e-reading moves to mobile, how will news publishers make money? [TeleRead]

News Roundup [June 3, 2016]

End-of-Week E-News Round-up3

2015 U.S. Book Industry Year-End Review [Nielsen/BookScan]

Despite the slight shift in total e-book sales, one channel within the digital space saw significant growth: smartphones. In fact, e-book consumption via smartphone grew from 7.6% in 2014 to 14.3% in 2015, which is yet another signal of how ubiquitous our handheld best friends have become.

An Editor’s View of Digital Publishing [The Iris: Behind the Scenes at the Getty]

One of the perks of being an editor is learning new things. Getty Publications publishes over thirty books a year on art history, conservation, architecture, archaeology, and related fields, so every time we take on a book project, we learn about new discoveries, new models of interpretation, and even new words.

Why teenagers are so resistant to e-readers [The Guardian]

In many areas of life teenagers are moving online – so why do so many surveys show they still prefer print books over e-readers? Sometimes, argues teen site member confessionsofabooklover, innovation just can’t beat tradition Continue reading News Roundup [June 3, 2016]

Thought leaders join forces in helping Total Boox advance cutting-edge ebook initiatives

TBX logo 8.2014 (640x440)Total Boox, an ebook service seeking to break all barriers between readers and ebooks—including limited availability, lack of simultaneous access, and prohibitive cost—announced today the formation of an Advisory Board to help advance its forthcoming ebook initiatives.

The Board consists of thought leaders on the cutting-edge of ebook development and distribution, including library directors, LIS scholars, entrepreneurs, and published authors—among them, Jamie LaRue, Sandra Hirsch, and John Dove. The Board also includes Terry Kirchner, the director of Westchester Library System, the first to sign Total Boox.

“Total Boox continues to penetrate the library market with force and purpose, now serving millions of patrons across the United States,” said Yoav Lorch, Founder and CEO of Total Boox. “In creating the Advisory Board we aspire to enrich our roster with original thinkers and people with deep understanding of the industry as well as an aptitude for change and growth.” Continue reading Thought leaders join forces in helping Total Boox advance cutting-edge ebook initiatives

VitalSource and Clever collaborate to improve Bookshelf—platform for K-12 course materials

BookshelfVitalSource, Ingram Content Group’s educational technology division, and Clever have announced that they are collaborating to reinforce security and convenience for K-12 users of VitalSource’s digital content delivery platform, Bookshelf®.

BookShelf allows students to access course materials on iPad, Android and Kindle devices, online or offline. Highlights include ability to move between pages and sections including linked Table of Contents; highlight text with one click in any color; add notes to highlighted passages; subscribe to classmates’ and instructors’ highlights and notes; scale images and text to any size; and customize page display.

According to the press release, VitalSource is incorporating technology from Clever to create “seamless and secure data integration between Bookshelf and a K-12 school’s or district’s student information system, all with single sign-on access.”

The rest of the press release below:

Continue reading VitalSource and Clever collaborate to improve Bookshelf—platform for K-12 course materials

NSR Book of the week: The Olive Picker by Kathryn Brettell

In an effort to draw attention to quality independent literature and in agreement with BlueInk Review, NSR highlights reviews published on BIR’s site each week. Last week’s pick was Jeri Parker’s Unmoored. Here is this week’s pick:

The Olive Picker

About Author

Kathryn BrettellKathryn Brettell, 64, is retired and lives with her husband between Singapore and Colorado.  Brettell writes a regular blog about travel and life issues.  The Olive Picker is her first book. Her short story, Solitaire, was published in The McGuffin Magazine and she has had several other short stories accepted for online publication. Through her writing, she aims to give hope to people who find themselves in abusive situations.

About BlueInk Review

BlueInk Review was founded by Patti Thorn, former books editor of the Rocky Mountain News, and Patricia Moosbrugger, literary agent and subsidiary rights specialist. It offers serious, unbiased reviews of self-published books. Reviews are penned largely by writers drawn from major mainstream publications, such as The New York Times and Washington Post, and editors of respected traditional publishing houses. Select reviews appear in Booklist magazine.

Newly-released Gale Researcher supports critical thinking; enables faculty-librarian collaboration



Gale, a part of Cengage Learning, has launched Gale Researcher, a new research platform and curriculum tool designed to help students connect to citable content aligned to introductory college courses. The Researcher enables librarians to customize and curate curriculum-aligned content to support student research. Below are the subject areas covered (and as described here):

Topics include coverage of the Puritan Tradition, Colonial Period, present day, and more.

Topics include Chaucer, Jane Austen, Dickens, and more.
Topics include the U.S. court system and structure, the history of the U.S. criminal justice system, police and law enforcement, and more.
Topics include econometrics and forecasting, labor economics, fiscal and monetary policy, and more.
Topics include the foundations of morality, appearance and reality, Plato, and more.
Topics include the U.S. Constitution, the culture of governance and politics, campaigns and elections, and more.
Topics include memory, gender and sexuality, cognitive elements, and more.
Topics include the origins of sociological thinking and perspective, social structures, the role of a family, and more.
Topics include the Revolutionary War, Slavery and the Old South, the Great Depression, and more.
Topics include coverage of historical development in ancient, medieval, and modern periods, and more.


Full press release below: Continue reading Newly-released Gale Researcher supports critical thinking; enables faculty-librarian collaboration

First Annual Indie Author Day to take place October 8, 2016


Mark your calendars. This sounds like a great event in support of those who create and write independently, with libraries and librarians placed right at the center of their communities, where they belong. Also, a reminder to our readers, NSR now provides reviews of self-published books each Wednesday in partnership with Blue Ink Review.

From a press release sent to NSR:

On October 8th, 2016, libraries across North America will host local events for the first annual Indie Author Day, and will then come together at 2 pm Eastern for a digital gathering that will offer inspiration, information and advice for authors from publishing industry specialists. This event will bring the indie writing community together through the library system both physically and digitally.

As indie publishing continues to gain ground, there are many authors who are still struggling to find their footing in the publishing world and get discovered. By working with their local library to build an audience within their communities, authors are able to find local fans that will help carry them to greater renown. Through Indie Author Day, libraries are encouraged to support their local writers and authors are driven to make that crucial connection with the libraries in their communities. See which libraries have signed up to participate here. Continue reading First Annual Indie Author Day to take place October 8, 2016

Portal on all things ebooks and econtent and for all reading, writing, publishing, curating, and distributing books and other content in digital format, including publishers, librarians, content developers, distributors, retailers, and educators. Managed and edited by Mirela Roncevic, with contributions from professionals and thought leaders in the United States and around the world.