Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Sony Join in Supporting the Publishing Innovation Awards

Publishing Innovation Awards for ebooks, enhanced ebooks, and book appsLast Thursday, the Publishing Innovation Awards (PIAs) announced that major ebook retailers Barnes & Noble, Sony, and Kobo have agreed to join the awards as supporting partners. Senior representatives at each of the retailers will join the advisory board for the Awards, providing key insight into the framing, judging, and evolution of the PIAs, as well as the all new QED Seal, a reader-focused standard for ebook quality.

Recognizing innovation, usability, user experience and quality design, the Publishing Innovation Awards celebrate excellence in digital publishing in 14 categories, up from 5 last year. New categories highlight ebooks, enhanced ebooks, and book apps, both traditionally and self-published. Category winners will be spotlighted at an awards gala during the Digital Book World Conference and Expo in New York in January, 2012. The deadline for entries is November 1st, 2011.

“While we continually innovate on the reading experience for ebooks, publishers are evolving as well. The best publishers are now developing the same focus on the quality and design of ebooks that they have traditionally had on print books.  As a company that obsesses over readers and the books they love, Kobo believes that the Publishing Innovation Awards rightly celebrate quality design and eBook innovation,” said Michael Tamblyn, EVP Content, Sales, and Merchandizing at Kobo

“With the growth of digital books and devices the publishing industry is witnessing an evolution in the truest sense of the word. We have finally reached a tipping point for digital reading that should be embraced as a renaissance in publishing. The Publishing Innovation Awards celebrates and honors excellence and innovation in e-books,” said Christian Smythe, Director of Sony Digital Reader Business Division.

“As the world’s largest bookseller, Barnes & Noble is dedicated to providing its customers with the highest-quality NOOK Books and digital periodicals to allow them to read what they love, anywhere they like using Barnes & Noble’s critically acclaimed NOOK Family of eBook Readers including  NOOK Color™ and NOOK Simple Touch Reader™.  Digital books also allow authors to showcase their remarkable talents in this great new format. Because of our commitment to quality across platforms, Barnes & Noble is proud to partner with the Publishing Innovation Awards,” said Liz Scheier, Editorial Director, Digital Content, Barnes & Noble.

Ami Greko, Senior Vendor Relations Manager at Kobo, Liz Scheier, Editorial Director, Digital Content, Barnes & Noble, and Christina Biamonte Faubert, Content Account Manager, eBooks, will join the advisory board.

The QED is the first-ever independent, third-party assessment of an ebook’s basic production standards. QED stands for “Quality, Excellence, Design” in ebooks. To earn the QED standard for excellence, ebooks must pass muster in a multi-format, multi-platform 13-step quality assurance (QA) process. Ebook entries will be thoroughly and independently vetted on devices from mobile to eInk to tablet. The QED is a reader-centric award that lets ebook consumers know that their purchase will render correctly, no matter where or how they choose to read. For more on the QED, including the judging process and

Founded in 2010, the Digital Book World Conference and Expo is the industry-leading annual event exclusively focused on the challenges and opportunities inherent in digital media. Its mission is to provide a forum for publishing executives and related professionals to illuminate issues and trends, share insights, find solutions and seize opportunities in the fast-changing, fast-growing digital publishing marketplace.


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