7.04.2005

Quick linkdump of audio resources

Three years ago my father started using Audible to download audio books that he would burn on to CDs for his commute. I know he rarely had the chance to read for the past 25 or so years as he balanced work, family, etc. I was happy that he found a way to find time for literature (The last book her listened to was Freakonomics and his enjoyment convinced me to read the book not the Wired piece nor the appearance of the author on the Daily Show nor the genenral buzz for the book.)

Last year I got an MP3 player and at first listened to it all the time. Then I got bored with it. Even on random I wasn't always in the mood for music. Right when I was tiring of it, I uploaded the audio presentation from work and interspresed them with the music. I finally realized the allure of audio books now that there's no CD to change/ tape to flip over.

And there you have- the 2 tail-ends of the burgeoning audiobook audience.

So what?

Well, it's also part of my job to watch this market (not license, not yet. Just chase the advances down, track the payments and analyze the history.) So below are several links that I've been collecting that are helping me form an better understanding of how the audio market is changing.

First off, is Audioblogging 2.0 which is Harlod Gilchrist's blog on podcasting and audioblogging.

And the connection between podcasts and audiobooks is that Audible .com has started to podcast content.

There's also this story about a NY library that is loaning out audiobooks pre-loaded on I-Pods. And now with added commentary from Booksquare.com.

As someone who handle the financial side of audiobooks, I can't see the benefit of changing audio rights into a royalty rather than a subsidiary right. Sure the market is taking off, but outside of a few titles I don't see the sales of these books vastly improving. Maybe if the author was signing with a publisher that had their own audio program, they should argue for it, but most of our authors are coming out ahead of the game by taking the small advance from Blackstone Audio and Recorded Books for the licensed audio rights. The royalty on these books is so small I can't see how changing it to be a royalty rahter than a right would benefit anyone. Maybe the audio publisher as they no longer pay an advance (as it would be tied in to the inital advance for publication), but certainly not the mid-list author nor the print publisher who would have a more convoluted contract to read through and determine the rights situation.

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