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Digital Publishing Methods - Pros and Cons

The Formats for eBooks:

Adobe PDF

Pros: free software, universally available format for both readers and publishers; readable on almost any Operating System and document viewing software

Cons: security risks within the software; difficulty in maintaining digital rights protections

Filtered HTML

Pros: if you know how to handle web pages, you can create this format; web pages of existing blogs can be converted this format, allowing eBooks to be sold through Amazon Kindle once the pages are taken off the Internet; digital publications

Cons: formatting varies when the filtered HTML page is opened, not a problem for those reading through a browser window but can cause problems for Amazon Kindle

XPS by Microsoft

Pros: XML Paper Specification is used to turn your Microsoft 2007 Word document into an XPS format available to everyone, which those without Windows 7 or even Microsoft Office can read; published to a blog or sharepoint document library and related website with only a few mouse clicks

Cons: Who’s heard of XPS? And who trusts it?

Microsoft Word

Pros: commonly available to readers and publishers; no additional conversions necessary to publish it except to upload to the website

Cons: not viewable to all potential readers; Microsoft Word versions can cause problems for Windows users; digital signatures and final version marks are not available until Microsoft Windows 2007 and those digital publication protections can still be bypassed

The Readers for eBooks:

Amazon Kindle

Pros: price for the device is coming down; many best seller books available in Amazon Kindle format as soon as the print version is out; the software can now be downloaded for free to a computer so Kindle eBooks can be read at your desktop or laptop or even iPad

Cons: digital rights management built into Kindle publishing methods allow them to recall it from your device if the author requests it, the digital version of repossessing your print books from your book shelf when there is a copyright dispute; Amazon Kindle does not always read competing digital book formats

Nook Reader:

Pros: competitively priced to Amazon Kindle; offers titles from publishers that did not want to use Amazon’s marketplace

Cons: doesn’t have the range of offerings like blogs and newspapers Amazon Kindle does; What happens if Barnes and Noble goes out of business?


Pros: if you love Apple, you love this technology; you can read anything published in any digital format and Amazon Kindle works as well (if you download the software)

Cons: cost of the device itself; getting the device if you don’t live in a major metro area and don’t want to risk having it mailed to you

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