Acme Book News
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Bravo for the ALA
American Library Association to argue against mandatory Internet filtering in U.S. District Court March 25
Intellectual property power grab
From the Fact Sheet:
- CIPA abolishes a community's control of its library policies. More than 95 percent of libraries have Internet-use policies in place. Local libraries and their trustees and community members have created solutions that work.
- Filters simply do not work, and CIPA does not protect children. In test after test, filters have failed to block objectionable content, and they continue to restrict legal and useful content. Filters can give parents a false sense of security that their children are protected when they are not. Education is more effective than filters - kids need to make good decisions about what they read and view, no matter where they are.
- CIPA violates the First and Fifth Amendments because it makes access to funding and discounts for Internet use in public libraries contingent on accepting content and viewpoint restrictions on constitutionally protected speech. The law does not strictly only limit Internet access for minors, but also for adults and library staff.
- Poor communities and people with disabilities will be affected disproportionately if libraries are forced to choose between federal technology funding and censorship.
When elephants dance by Michael Fraase
When elephants dance, it's best to get out of the way. That's exactly what's happening now as the entertainment industry--the recording, publishing, and motion picture industries, mainly--attempts a worldwide intellectual property power grab with two distinct targets. Think of it: a coup and a lock on all published content in the same year, amazing isn't it? [read more]
What Hollings' Bill Would Do by Declan McCullagh
The University of North Texas Libraries and the U.S. Government Printing Office, as part of the Federal Depository Library Program, created a partnership to provide permanent public access to the electronic Web sites and publications of defunct U.S. government agencies and commissions. This collection was named the "CyberCemetery" by early users of the site.
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Clueless in Washington
Forget e-Books. Online publishers believe the biggest challenge to the "paperback in your pocket" will come from publishing on demand. Chris Middleton reports. [read more]
Anti-Copy Bill Hits D.C. by Declan McCullagh
Everyone's linking to it
Sen. Fritz Hollings has fired the first shot in the next legal battle over Internet piracy.
The Democratic senator from South Carolina finally has introduced his copy protection legislation, ending over six months of anticipation and sharpening what has become a heated debate between Hollywood and Silicon Valley.
The bill, called the Consumer Broadband and Digital Television Promotion Act (CBDTPA), prohibits the sale or distribution of nearly any kind of electronic device -- unless that device includes copy-protection standards to be set by the federal government. [read more]
The Social Life of Paper by Malcolm Gladwell
...Paper is tangible: we can pick up a document, flip through it, read little bits here and there, and quickly get a sense of it. (In another study on reading habits, Sellen and Harper observed that in the workplace, people almost never read a document sequentially, from beginning to end, the way they would read a novel.) Paper is spatially flexible, meaning that we can spread it out and arrange it in the way that suits us best. And it's tailorable: we can easily annotate it, and scribble on it as we read, without altering the original text. Digital documents, of course, have their own affordances. They can be easily searched, shared, stored, accessed remotely, and linked to other relevant material. But they lack the affordances that really matter to a group of people working together on a report. ... [read more]
Framing Papers from the Conference on the Public Domain held at Duke Law School, November 9-11, 2001
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Scholastic Tries Branding with eBooks by Erin Joyce
The book is dead, long live the book
The market for e-books is an enduring conundrum for publishers: a necessary investment while they wait out a mass market for digital books that has yet to, and may not, materialize.
But children's publishing and media company Scholastic Inc. sees its latest e-book project as a branding and marketing opportunity to help drive book sales. Plus, if the younger set warms up to e-book formats on mobile devices in the future, the company is taking no chances with positioning now.
The New York-based publishing giant plans to release 19 best-selling titles in e-book format, including its popular Dear America, Royal Diaries, Remnants and Scholastic Question & Answer book series. [read more]
Book Sales Total $25 Billion in 2001
Publishers take a stand for open government
US book sales totaled $25,356,500,000 billion in 2001... [read more]
Publishers Seek to Overturn Bush Executive Order on Presidential Papers
Independent bookseller struggles
The U.S. book publishing industry today urged a federal court to nullify President Bush's executive order limiting access to presidential papers and to order the National Archives to administer the Presidential Records Act of 1978 as Congress intended.
In an amicus brief submitted this morning to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the Association of American Publishers, leading a distinguished coalition of organizations representing publishers, authors, journalists, and historians, called the Bush Order a "real, substantial, and immediate threat...to the integrity of the historical record and to the public interest." [read more]
Book Lovers Fight to Keep Store Open
Independent Apple Book Center Struggles for a New Lease on Life
Sherry McGee may be in her last days as an independent bookseller. After signing yet another loan, dumping her 401(K) fund into her beloved Apple Book Center, and facing debts totaling $300,000, she told her staff in late February that she would close the doors this month.
What happened next was a surprise to the former staffing company executive who has a passion for literature. Customers begged her not to close, and they started fighting for the store's survival, mounting a "Save Apple Book Center" campaign.
"It is actually catching on," McGee said. "It's the most wonderful thing."
McGee blames last year's economic recession for causing the store's problems. "For a company that already has no cash cushion, we just got wiped out after Sept. 11," said McGee. "We're just completely out of gas and out of cash." [read more]