Daily News from Poets & Writers

Sony Unveils New Reader Line, Drops E-book Prices

by Adrian Versteegh

Daily News

Online Only, posted 8.6.09

Hoping to ramp up competition in the e-book arena, Sony announced the launch of a new—and less expensive—line of digital readers on Tuesday evening. The Reader Pocket Edition and Reader Touch Edition, priced at $199 and $299 respectively, will hit stores later this month. The company also said that its online store will knock two dollars off the cost of new and bestselling e-books, matching the $9.99 price Amazon set for Kindle titles in 2007. 

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Books Editor Sharma-Jensen Leaves Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

by Adrian Versteegh

Daily News

Online Only, posted 8.5.09

Critic Geeta Sharma-Jensen penned her final column as books editor of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel on Saturday after announcing last week that she has accepted a voluntary buyout offer from the newspaper’s publisher. Similar deals—part of a cost-cutting plan to address flagging ad revenue—have been accepted by thirty-six other employees at the paper, including four arts and entertainment writers.

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Steven Isenberg Named Director of PEN American

by Adrian Versteegh

Daily News

Online Only, posted 8.4.09

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PEN American Center, the U.S. division of the world’s oldest literary and human rights organization, yesterday announced the appointment of Steven L. Isenberg as executive director. Isenberg, a professor, lawyer, and former publisher, will replace Michael Roberts, who stepped down in June after eleven years in the position.

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HMH Signs Outsourcing Deal, Lays Off Sixty-five

by Adrian Versteegh

Daily News

Online Only, posted 8.3.09

Another wave of layoffs hit Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH) last week, with the publisher confirming plans to eliminate sixty-five jobs at its offices in Boston and Orlando. The decision follows a deal signed in July with global outsourcing firm Cognizant Technology Solutions, which will see a portion of HMH’s information technology services transferred overseas.

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For Sale: Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, Others

by Adrian Versteegh

Daily News

Online Only, posted 7.31.09

Citing a rocky advertising market, Reed Business Information announced plans yesterday to sell off nearly fifty of its U.S. trade publications, including Publishers Weekly, Library Journal, and School Library Journal. The news followed a second-quarter report showing that profits at RBI’s parent company dropped 48 percent during the first half of 2009. 

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Samsung Debuts E-book Reader

by Adrian Versteegh

Daily News

Online Only, posted 7.30.09

Yet another contender entered the rapidly crowding e-book market yesterday when electronics giant Samsung announced the South Korean debut of its first e-book reader, the SNE-50K. The six-and-a-half-ounce device, which will retail for the equivalent of about $270, is not expected to reach the American market until 2010. 

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