Here’s an interesting theory on one of the side-effects of J.K. Rowling and her Pottermore ebook self-publishing venture.
Digital distributor OverDrive will provide the e-book platform for Pottermore, according toPaidContent. Bloomsbury, Rowling’s publishers in the U.K. will receive some slice of the revenues as will, presumably, Scholastic, her U.S. publisher. Rowling made it clear that she wants her books to be made available on every device to “guarantee people everywhere are getting the same experience and at the same time.” But that would mean bringing the book to the Kindle, which would allow Amazon a cut of the revenues as well. Though, as Laura Owen has pointed out, “if there’s any author that Amazon would let dictate the terms, it’s Rowling.” But at what cost?
When Harry Potter debuted more than a decade ago, it shook up the publishing world. Since then, hundreds of millions of copies have been sold all over the world. Rowling has positioned herself to disrupt the digital publishing system, too, using the exact same materials. Her new site won’t start selling audiobooks and e-books until sometime in October, so the details are still a little shaky. Presumably, Rowling and her team are looking into all of their options.
“We want to make sure anyone who buys it can read it on any device,” Pottermore CEO Rod Henwood told the Bookseller. “We are talking to the Kindles, the Apples, the Googles, Barnes & Noble to make sure they are compatible. We set the pricing, we maintain the policy of making them available to as many readers as possible.” Henwood’s words suggest that the Potter books will be released in a single format, probably EPUB. The problem? Amazon’s Kindle, which controls about 60 percent of the e-reader market, according to PaidContent, doesn’t support EPUB. But, if that’s the route Rowling decides to take, it had better start. If Amazon doesn’t change its policies, it will risk losing Potter fans to the Nook, the iPad, the Kobo and other e-readers currently on the market.
Link to the rest at The Atlantic
Passive Guy thinks the Pottermore move will sell a lot of ereaders for use by children, which speeds up the decline of paper books.
He also thinks Amazon will work with Rowling because many parents will decide an ereader stuffed with Potter books is the perfect birthday or Christmas present for a child of a certain age.