Digital Reading and Your Children

The Joan Ganz Cooney Center has come out with another survey about digital reading between parents and children and the news is not great – but not all bad either.

Parents and children both still overwhelmingly prefer to read print books when reading together. Very few other either parents or children prefer e-books. However, when parents are on vacation or when they’re busy with something else, they prefer having their kids read digitally.

There’s logic behind it: It’s easy to carry an iPad on vacation as opposed to an armful of kids books; and when you’re busy, giving your child a device that can read to them is preferable if they themselves don’t yet know how to read.

One of the takeaways here for publishers might be that they should exploit these preferences, perhaps offering titles specially designed for vacations or to attend to restless toddlers when parents cannot.

Read many more findings from the fascinating study, including what percentage of parents own iPads and the top reasons they don’t read to their kids digitally.

Amazon’s Gamble on Kindle Serials (PaidContent)
Amazon isn’t the first company to try digital serialized fiction – but it’s certainly the biggest. Despite the company’s size and great prowess at selling books, it’s a tough business: Writing singles is hard and the model for selling them is far from established. Related: Amazon’s best news has nothing to do with devices.

E-Book Price War in the UK Gets Extreme (Guardian)
Sony has taken to discounting some of its e-books in the UK to ₤0.20 ($0.32) as part of a pricing special. Amazon has moved to match the price every time. Authors and publishers are happy that they’re still getting the full payout for every book sold – for now. There are worries that the low prices could devalue e-books in consumers’ eyes.

Digital Fiction Sales up 188% in UK (Telegraph)
According to the latest figures from the UK’s Publishers Association, digital sales of fiction were up 188% in the first six months of 2012 versus the same period last year. Children’s books were up 171% and non-fiction was up 128%. Overall growth rate exceeds that in the U.S. but children’s books are booming States-side.

Digital Publisher to Print Books Based on Community Feedback (DBW)
Start-up digital publisher Bard will take some of its books from cyberspace to the printing press based on feedback from its community of readers.

Kobo Inks Deal With UK Booksellers (DBW)
Riding the momentum of its deal with the American Booksellers Association, Kobo has signed a deal with the UK’s Booksellers Association that will potentially give it another 1,000 bookshops across the UK and Ireland to sell its devices and e-books in.

OverDrive Hits the Road With Digital Bookmobile (DBW)
Some 42% of library patrons are unaware that their libraries offer e-books, according to a recent study. OverDrive aims to change that with the Digital Bookmobile, a mobile learning center that will teach library patrons how to borrow e-books.

E-Book Revolution Around the Corner in India? (Business Standard)
A recent study pointed out India as one of the most promising growth prospects for e-books in the coming years. The print publishing industry in the huge country is still growing at 10% to 15% a year.

Fake Book Review Boom (Good E Reader)
According to a new report from Gartner Research, 15% of all book reviews will be fake by 2014. We’re surprised that proportion of them aren’t fake already.

New Dr. Seuss Bookshelf App for In-App Purchases (DBW)
Oceanhouse media, publisher of 45 Dr. Seuss apps, has launched a bookshelf app to organize them all. Users can also discover an purchase new Oceanhouse Dr. Seuss titles through the app.

Stephen King and E-Books (Pub Weekly)
The King of horror/suspense (pun? What pun?) was an early player in the e-book game, releasing a straight-to-PDF title in 2000 that sold over 400,000 copies in the first four hours. More recently, somebody has been impersonating him and selling books on Amazon.

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