Keeping up with Digital Natives

kids reading ebooks children's publishers webcast Digital Book WorldBy some accounts, young readers don’t behave much differently than older ones do; some studies find only tepid interest among digital natives in ebooks and other digital content.

But the latest report based on an ongoing research project between PlayCollective and Digital Book World paints a more nuanced picture of children and families sorting out where digital content fits into their reading lives.

For one thing, children appear to be playing more direct roles in choosing what and how they read digitally. And parents seem to be enabling that freedom, in part by spending more on ebooks than they have in the past.

So where does that leave publishers, marketers, content developers and other players in the children’s space?

Find out in a free webcast next month.

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How to Raise Readers (NPR)
Parents and teachers are continually looking for ways to get children excited about reading—often regardless of format, print or digital—and the advice this expert on the subject offers may also ring true for publishers and children’s app developers.

HarperCollins to Grow Globally (Pub Lunch)
The publisher says its acquisition of Harlequin last year has already gone better than expected, not just in financial terms but also because of the broadened international profile it’s gained as a result. HarperCollins is now shopping around for more global acquisitions opportunities.

Publishers Rebut Criticism of Common Core Materials (Education Week)
A nonprofit’s recent review of K-8 math materials published by Pearson, McGraw-Hill and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt found the vast majority don’t sufficiently align with Common Core standards, as they claim to. The publishers have defended their content, questioning the methodology of the study.
Related: How Publishers Can Retool for the Common Core

Well-off Millennials Rate Amazon, Facebook Highly (Forbes)
Publishers and retailers join a slew of other brands with young spendthrifts in their crosshairs, and targeting them effectively is no small challenge. The past year has reportedly seen an uptick in “affluent millennial perceptions” of Facebook, Amazon, AOL and the Facebook-owned WhatsApp.

How to Build a Platform for YA Readers (Pub Perspectives)
Scholastic has seen its “This Is Teen” community for readers of young adult fiction expand since the platform’s launch in 2011. The marketing manager who heads up the venture accounts for its success and explains what Scholastic has learned from engaging with those fans.

Three Publishers Self-Innovative (Futurebook)
One industry insider rounds up three recent initiatives he considers to be exemplary “new approaches to doing business in this evolving environment that build on a growing understanding of what a publisher ought to be now.”

Major Merger Could Reshape Italian Book Market (Pub Perspectives)
Mondadori recently made an offer to buy RCS Libri, which could result in a merger of two of Italy’s biggest publishers. Industry insider Marcello Vena explains what impact the deal, if reached, could have on the Italian and European publishing landscapes.

ICYMI: Google to Push Mobile on Publishers (DBW)
In one expert’s assessment, publishers are already getting left behind on the shift to mobile reading. Many of their websites aren’t properly optimized for the algorithm change Google has planned next month, and the ramifications for title discovery and direct-to-consumer efforts could be considerable.


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