TECH AND INDUSTRY

NPR reports on how a publisher tries podcasts as a gateway into audiobooks. For people who are just getting used to spoken-word entertainment, it's an interesting entry point. It's not too much of a commitment. It's not as scary as, say, oh, I'm going to download this 30-hour audiobook.

This article in Androidcentral.com explains that Alexa not only has great organizational capabilities, but that it's useful for more than just an interactive to-do list and search engine. One can also use Alexa to listen to audiobooks when it's time to relax.

The book industry looks to hold steady in a turbulent time. ABCnews.com reports that publishers and booksellers say the unpredictable Republican president has opened a bull market for warnings of dystopia, whether Snyder's book or George Orwell's "1984," while disrupting the reading public's concentration and making it hard to know what will sell in the future.

There’s a renaissance for spoken word content and our media diet is expanding, but as the landscape becomes more saturated, audiobooks face greater and greater discoverability challenges,” said Tom Webster, v-p of strategy and marketing at Edison Research, during his keynote speech at the annual Audio Publishers Association meeting. This Publishers Weekly article cites BookExpo 2017: Audiobooks Evolve in the Age of Podcasts.

Publishers Weekly describes how RBmedia came to life with the Audiobooks.com purchase. RBmedia, based in Landover, Md., now employs nearly 400 people across all eight of its brands, according to John Shea, chief product and marketing officer, and total combined revenue for the company is in the “nine figures.”

NEWS FOR AUDIOBOOK FANS

For parents, long car trips can be anxiety-producing. Hours on the road — especially in traffic — can lead to some serious whining from the back seat. Never mind iPads and DVDs; audiobooks allow the whole family to enjoy a good book together. The Washington Post offers some suggestions for great car-ride listens, broken down by age, but you’ll enjoy them even if you’re old enough to be in the driver’s seat.

Bustle.com sheds light on J.K. Rowling's Famous "Argument" With The Harry Potter Audiobook Narrator Stephen Fry.

Possibly no one line from legendary science communicator Carl Sagan is more quoted or mind-blowing. And now there is a way for you to better know COSMOS, released for the first time as an audiobook, read by an all-star cast of those who took up the torch. The Nerdist reveals who was tapped to narrate Sagan's epic work.

One audiobook fan experiences listening to authors read their own poetry and it was occasionally abysmal. However on select pieces, hearing it read just as the author intended it to be, from the lips of the author him/herself, it was wonderful. Bookriot explains further in its article about audible poetry.

In the UK, Books & Publishing reports that the UK became the first country in the world to include remote loans in its PLR scheme when it passed the Digital Economy Act 2017 in May.

DUBAI: Gulftoday.com reports that The Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF) has launched the region’s largest, most comprehensive audiobook platform, “Masmoou.com”, through its educational arm, Qindeel Educational.

A 'Human Library' in Mumbai will allow readers to borrow books which are, well, real people and "check" them out over an intimate conversation for about thirty minutes. TimesofIndia.com reports that the experience is designed as an anti-violence initiative to encourage dialogue.

Audiobooks are catching on in Iran!  According to the Financial Tribune, Navaar, an online platform focused on producing and selling audiobooks, recently held competitions to select voice actors, and those who qualified had 10 advanced voice training sessions to record audiobooks.