ReadySteadyBlog

Today, Amazon launch their e-book reader, the Amazon Kindle. There is a very chunky article in Newsweek (thanks Lee!) with the details:


This week Bezos is releasing the Amazon Kindle, an electronic device that he hopes will leapfrog over previous attempts at e-readers and become the turning point in a transformation toward Book 2.0. That's shorthand for a revolution (already in progress) that will change the way readers read, writers write and publishers publish. The Kindle represents a milestone in a time of transition, when a challenged publishing industry is competing with television, Guitar Hero and time burned on the BlackBerry; literary critics are bemoaning a possible demise of print culture, and Norman Mailer's recent death underlined the dearth of novelists who cast giant shadows.

Evan Schnittman, OUP's Vice President of Business Development and Rights for the Academic and USA Divisions, has a review of the Kindle Device up on the OUPblog.

Readers Comments

  1. The term "Book 2.0" is so unpleasant it makes me want to vomit.

  2. I agree, the all the "2.0" buzzwords are puke-worthy!

    Just finished watching the promo videos for Kindle, and it does look like a very exciting product! Hope it does what it says on the tin.

    So, when are we going to see RSB on the Kindle? (... and with $0.99 a month fee, would you get a cut?)

  3. Nicholas Murray Tuesday 20 November 2007

    I have also just read an article about this in today's "Independent" and one thing worries me - but we are all feeling our way to an understanding of what this actually means and alarmism seems par for the course - and that is the impact on authors. Put it another way, the production of books, whether e-books or not, depends on their being written. If this becomes another way of bypassing the system to download stuff to people it's great in one sense for them but if there is increasingly less in it for authors will they eventually find it even less economically viable to write them? Already advances for serious books are falling and publishers are dumbing down. People write of course from creative compulsion. They write because they have to and will circulate in ms or samizdat if necessary, but I need some reassurance that there isn't a downside to all this. Maybe there isn't. Maybe everything in the garden is lovely. But why then, reading about the new device (and, crucially, the system of downloads it is linked to) do I feel a vague, indefinable sense of unease?

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