The murky status of rights clearance is bamboozling the Japanese publishing industry's efforts to move into the eBook market even as start-ups take matters into their own hands and start scanning books for people who want to make space in their apartments in Japan, according to a recent report in Bloomberg.
The recent arrival of Apple's iPad is accelerating the trend, according to Bloomberg.
"People are taking matters in their own hands because the publishers are not meeting the market's needs," Toshihiro Takagi, an analyst at market research firm Impress R&D, told Bloomberg in Tokyo.
Consumers such as Yusuke Ohki, who has 2,000 books in his Tokyo apartment, are scanning them and accessing them through their iPads.
Ohki has since started up his own 120-person firm that does the same thing for customers. There are as many as 60 companies offering such a service, according to Bloomberg.
Japanese publishers are facing the same quandary as U.S. publishers did when Google started its book scanning project several years ago to make them more accessible to the public. They're hamstrung by the byzantine system of copyright agreements between themselves and their authors.
Takagi also said that the publishers are being held back by the pricing system in Japan and problems rendering Japanese characters on screen.
Bloomberg notes that Japan has a $24 billion market for books and magazines -- the largest in the world.
The Japan Book Publishers Association notes that scanning for personal use is permitted by Japanese copyright law. Book scanning services have customers sign a document that says that the scans are for personal use only before completing the scan.
But observers worry that scans of these books will nevertheless start circulating online.
For its part, Google has reached a complex settlement with American book publishers and their authors. The agreement is still awaiting approval by a federal district court.
- Advocates for Antitrust Enforcement Say Consumer Welfare Standard Only One Layer of Competition Law
- In Law More Than a Year, MOBILE Now Advocates Say Act Requires Further Implementation for 5G Deployment
- Broadband Roundup: Texas Reaches T-Mobile Settlement, Closing the ‘Homework Gap,’ Broadcast Ownership
- UTOPIA Fiber Announces Completion of Latest Round of Funding, a $48 Million Network Expansion
- Prakash Sangam: China’s Huawei Clones Are Greater Threat to National Security than Huawei
Signup for Broadband Breakfast
Intellectual Property4 months ago
In Congressional Oversight Hearing, Register of Copyrights Says Office Is Responding to Online Users
Broadband Data6 months ago
California Report: Income Most Significant Factor in Low Broadband Adoption
Privacy and Security3 months ago
Comparing Privacy Policies for Wearable Fitness Trackers: Apple, Fitbit, Xiaomi and Under Armour
Antitrust3 months ago
Addressing the Impact of Big Data Upon Antitrust is More Complicated Than a Big Tech Breakup
Expert Opinion5 months ago
Geoff Mulligan: A ‘Dumb’ Way to Build Smart Cities
Antitrust3 months ago
Broadband Roundup: Everyone (Almost) Gangs Up on Google, Muni Broadband Fact Sheet, SHLB Anchornet Conference
Broadband Roundup4 months ago
Cable Industry Touts Energy Efficiency, Next Century Highlights Open Access Fiber, Aspen Forum Set
Broadband's Impact5 months ago
Law Enforcement and Advocates of Facial Recognition Technologies Battle Misconceptions