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Important developing trend

The article below ("Who Needs Google?") appeared in 
Weekly.  It describes a service from a division of Electronic
Newstand called LibreDigital that scans and converts books and
makes them searchable online. Full control of what and how much
is viewable remains with the publisher. Note that this is a SAAS
(Software as a Service) implementation.  IT types need not apply.

This is an important development (assuming the technology
works!).  This will bring more and more content online, where it
can be found by any well-tuned search engine.  I don't much care
for the headline of the article myself, but that is a matter of
taste.  It should be said that while LibreDigital (and other
emerging, competing services) does much of what the Google Print
and Library programs proposed to do, it is highly unlikely that
many publishers would have invested in this route if Google had
not put a gun to their head.

Joe Esposito

      Who Needs Google?

             by Calvin Reid, PW Daily -- 8/22/2006
                     Current Issue - News

       Looking to exploit publisher skepticism over Google's book
scanning programs, the developer of the technology behind
HarperCollins' newly launched Browse-Inside program is now
offering the service broadly to all book publishers. The
LibreDigital Warehouse is a service developed by the Texas-based
firm LibreDigital that allows publishers to offer their catalogs
and titles to online consumers for browsing while maintaining
control over the display and access to content.

       Launched earlier this month ("HC Launches Online Browse
Option," PW Daily, Aug. 3), Harper's Browse-Inside service is
similar to Amazon's Search Inside service. Craig Miller, general
manager of LibreDigital, said the company began working with
Harper to address publisher concerns about control of their
copyrights once their content goes online. "We saw the discussion
going on between Google and publishers," said Miller. In addition
to Harper, Miller said the firm is in negotiations with other New
York trade houses to use the LibreDigital Warehouse service on
their own websites.

       Miller claimed the LDW gives publishers control over both
the quality of digitization and the display of content using
flexible DRM that gives the reader "a perfect representation of
the book." Miller elaborated: "It's like the bookstore browsing
experience, but allows secure management of online content and
distribution." LibreDigital (Libredigital.com) is a division
NewStand Inc, a company offering digital access to a wide range
of national print publications. The company is also an
Application Service Provider, according to Miller, which means it
can deliver LDW technology to publishers over a network,
simplifying the implementation of the browsing technology for
publisher-clients. "By working with us," Miller said, "publishers
can assert control of their copyrights online."