Short Takes: Digital Rights

It’s a big week for audio rights in the book world. After last week’s op-ed piece in The New York Times by Roy Blount Jr., president of the Authors’ Guild (and author of Alphabet Juice), the Kindle has decided to disable audio files on a title-by-title basis.

There is currently no clear ruling about audio and video rights in digital books. Amazon didn’t even try to fight this.

Molly Flatt of The Guardian writes that she loves disconnecting from the world by reading a book. Chris Meade laments that blocking students from social media tools limits their opportunities to learn. In case you want to increase the social aspect of your reading, here’s a program designed for responses to specific paragraphs called Write to Reply.

Here’s a poem about Born Digital projects by Stephanie Strickland. (via Silliman’s blog)

A new program for reading debuted on Thursday, called Shortcovers. The idea is that you can use one website to access books from all different devices, but the site is down today for some reason.

Two non-digital pieces of book news:

The language of cave men? Mark Liberman doesn’t buy it.

Joseph O’Neill, author of Netherland, wins the 2009 Pen/Faulkner!