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Electronic Publishing Trends

This is an analysis of electronic publishing trends from the year 1970 to 2008 in the form of a chart. From the chart you can see, the term "electronic publishing" was unfamiliar to most people in 1970. Then from 1977, some people began to use it, and it gained great popularity from 1980 to 1985. The term experienced ups and downs since then. There are three prime times of the phrase, which appeared in 1985, 1988 and 1997 respectively, from its last heyday, the phrase has been used by less and less people.

Though the term "electronic publishing" is used by less people now, it doesn't necessarily mean that electronic publishing is on the decline. On the contrary, with more advanced E-books available, and with more people realize the importance of environmental protection, electronic publishing will surely gain more popularity in the future.

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Electronic Publishing

From the chart above we see rise and fall of the term "electronic publishing" in literature published between 1970 and 2008.


Second Editor's Draft of EPUB 3.1 Available for Review
Markus Gylling, CTO, IDPF & Chair EPUB 3 WG
April 26, 2016

The EPUB 3 Working Group is pleased to announce that the second Editor's Draft of EPUB 3.1 is now available for community review. The previous Editors Draft, published in January, included some potentially controversial changes, in effect as 'trial balloons". Based on community feedback, some of these proposed changes have now been modified or redacted. A set of new proposed features have also been added in this draft, including the first draft of the EPUB Accessibility specification. The draft also clarifies the prioritization of Author and User styles.

For more information about changes in the new Editors Draft, please refer to the EPUB 3.1 Changes from 3.0.1 document. Those affiliated with IDPF member organizations are encouraged to join the IDPF EPUB Working Group email list to participate directly in the development process; feedback can also be provided via the IDPF GitHub issue tracker.

IDPF Member Meeting May 11 at BEA Chicago
April 18, 2016

The IDPF will host a special meeting for members at BEA 2016 (Chicago) on Wednesday, May 11 after the conclusion of our May 10-11 IDPF DigiCon conference. The meeting will take place from 2:00 to 4:00pm in McCormick Place room W196. All those who register for the IDPF DigiCon event as IDPF members will be automatically admitted to the member meeting. If you would like to attend the member meeting only (i.e. are not attending IDPF DigiCon) please RSVP your name and membership affiliation to . The meeting agenda will include an overview of the status and roadmap for EPUB standards and adoption, and important information on cross-organization collaborations. While it is not anticipated that any formal decisions will be taken, this is a member meeting and as such will not be open to the press or public. Additional information regarding this event was recently provided to each member organization's primary representative.

IDPF DigiCon @BEA Announces Speakers and Sessions - Register Now for Early Bird Savings
April 2, 2016

IDPF DigiCon @BEA (fka Digital Book) has been hailed as the absolutely critical, best value and most informative conference in the industry, attracting an audience of nearly 1,000 professionals annually, of which 60% are C-Suite executives, senior directors, or above.

The 2016 IDPF DigiCon @BEA will be held at the McCormick Center in Chicago from May 10-11, 2016.  For complete program details and for early bird savings, click here.

Our highly-acclaimed roster of speakers includes keynoter Sir Tim Berners-Lee (W3C), Michael Tamblyn (Rakuten Kobo), Rick Anderson (President-Elect, Society for Scholarly Publishing), Sean Callahan (LinkedIn), Debra Deyan (Deyan Audio), Keith Michael Fiels (Exec. Director, ALA), Michael Healy (Copyright Clearance Center), Phil Madans (Hachette Book Group), Liisa McCloy-Kelley (Penguin Random House), Dominique Raccah (SourceBooks), and many more highly-regarded technologists, librarians, University Press experts and entrepreneurs.

Join your colleagues as we take a deep dive into all things Digital: The Channels, The Formats and The Opportunities. Channel-focused topics will include retail, education, online communities, international, mobile, data, websites, content usage, and digital platforms; formats-focused topics will discuss EPUB for Education (fka EDUPUB), EPUB 3, audio formats, accessible publishing, subscription, data, rights and licensing. Opportunities explored will include the science of metadata, case studies, lending, standards, best practices, what's ahead and much more.

The IDPF welcomes the Society of Scholarly Publishers (SSP) and its members as our 2016 conference partner. We are pleased to include much greater coverage of scholarly publishing and look forward to meeting hundreds of our new SSP colleagues at IDPF DigiCon @BEA.

Visit for a complete look at the comprehensive program and speaker roster. Registration includes FREE ACCESS to BookExpo America. Register now.

Limited sponsorship opportunities remain. For inquiries, please contact Wendy Erman Wels at

Sir Tim Berners-Lee, Inventor of the World Wide Web, to Keynote at IDPF DigiCon @BEA
March 25, 2016

The IDPF is pleased to announce that Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, will serve as the keynote speaker at the upcoming IDPF DigiCon @BEA. The 2016 DigiCon (fka IDPF Digital Book) will take place at the McCormick Center in Chicago from May 10-11, 2016. Registration to DigiCon includes free access to all of BookExpo America and early bird savings are still in effect. 

Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee is a computer scientist. He made a proposal for an information management system in March 1989, and implemented the first successful communication between a Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) client and server via the Internet sometime around mid-November of the following year.

Berners-Lee is the director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), which oversees the Web's continued development, and is a Professor of Engineering and holder of the 3Com Founders Chair at the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL).  In 2007 he founded of the World Wide Web Foundation.  In 2004, Berners-Lee was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II for his pioneering work and, in April 2009 he was elected a foreign associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences. In 2011, he was named as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Ford Foundation.

"Whether it's EPUB content or social marketing and reader engagement, Web technologies are foundational to enabling content to be created and distributed globally. Digital publishers depend on the Web for everything they do, and the Web and its open standards developed by W3C are continuing to rapidly grow and evolve," said Bill McCoy, Executive Director, IDPF. "So I'm particularly delighted that Tim Berners-Lee will be with us in Chicago. We are at a key juncture in the growth of digital content and Sir Tim's talk will provide crucial inspiration and information for anyone in the industry. "

For complete program details, speaker roster, and to register, click here.  

For sponsorship inquiries, please contact Wendy Erman Wels at Limited opportunities remain. 


White House Announces Launch of Open eBooks Project
February 24, 2016
Now Available: A Library of Opportunity

Open eBooks is now available to millions of students offering unprecedented access to thousands of digital books.

What if we could ensure that every student, no matter where they live or the income of their parents, could get access to a great book?  What if they had access to not just one book, but a library of thousands of titles – and could read them from anywhere?

We’ve taken a big step toward that vision thanks to Open eBooks, a stakeholder-driven project that the President highlighted last April, and that after months of hard work by a team of libraries, publishers, and non-profits, is launching nationwide today. For millions of America’s kids, Open eBooks can be a passport to a world of learning and opportunity – delivering over $250 million of reading material to students who need it most, and introducing them to a love of reading.

Why is this so important?  Ask Colin Rogister, who helps lead the Administration’s ConnectED initiative. Colin began his career as a 2nd grade teacher at a low-income elementary school in California, where he taught Marlene, a DREAMer whose parents emigrated from Mexico to find a better life. An advanced reader, it only took Marlene a few months to finish every chapter-book in Colin’s classroom. If she had been able to access a resource like Open eBooks, she would have had thousands of popular and award-winning books at her fingertips. Stories like Marlene’s help inspire efforts like Open eBooks.

The President said it best:

“No matter who you are, where you live, or how much money you’ve got, you should be able to access the world’s knowledge and information just like anyone else.”
 –President Obama, Anacostia Library, April 30, 2015
Open eBooks helps advance ConnectED’s vision of seizing every opportunity technology affords to ensure students, inside and outside the classroom, have access to the best teaching and learning. Thanks to President Obama’s leadership, we've already cut the connectivity divide in half in schools. Meanwhile, more students than ever – at all income levels – have access at school or home to a digital device, whether a tablet, laptop, or mobile phone. According to a national survey, 85 percent of families with young children (6-13 years old) living below the poverty line have access to mobile devices. That translates into a unique opportunity to deliver more and better content to students with a hunger to learn.

Open eBooks is not a federal program; it was created by a breakthrough coalition of literacy, library, publishing, and technology organizations who worked together over the past year to make the initiative possible. This team – Digital Public Library of America, First Book, and The New York Public Library with content support from digital books distributor Baker & Taylor – created the app, curated the eBook collection, and developed a system for distribution and use. They received support for development of technology critical to the app from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and content contributions from ten major publishers — including today’s big announcement that National Geographic will include all its age-appropriate content in the app.

But they can’t do this alone. To make sure students can take advantage, they need the help of a responsible adult — those who work with children in need through libraries, schools, shelters and clinics, out-of-school programs, and early childhood programs; and those who work primarily with students in military families. This includes teachers, librarians, after-school counselors, and others primarily serving students in need. Students with codes can then download the free Open eBooks app to mobile devices from their mobile app store and enter their access code to start enjoying Open eBooks.

For more information on how to sign up and to connect young people with the eBooks they need, visit

This article was posted on by R.David Edelman, Special Assistant to the President for Economic and Technology Policies

New Public Draft for EPUB for Education Profile
February 19, 2016

A 2nd Editors Draft of the EPUB for Education Profile has been announced today. This new profile specification includes:

IMS LTI Integration Section a name change to EPUB for Education (formerly EDUPUB) the resolution of approximately 15 minor tracker issues

Unlike traditional specifications, the development of this profile is anticipated to follow an agile model with core features and functionality defined in the initial release and less critical features will follow on. Feedback on this new draft is welcomed by the EPUB for Education Working Group and should be directed to IDPF CTO, Markus Gylling -

The release of this 2nd draft has been timed to co-ordinate with the upcoming EDUPUB Alliance meetings in Baltimore next week, where plans and next steps will be discussed. 

First EPUB Summit April 7-8, Bordeaux, France - A Bordeaux Digital Week Event
February 2, 2016

IDPF and EDRLab are pleased to announce that the 2016 EPUB Summit will take place during the Bordeaux Digital Week at Librairie Mollat. Over the course of two days, the digital publishing community will focus on analysis, demonstrations, workshops and collaborative work to share best practices and learn about the latest developments surrounding EPUB.

Technological developments in the field of digital publishing have opened new perspectives for content creators, and have enabled enhanced reading experiences. The disruptive nature of this evolution, combined with shifting consumer demands, offers many opportunities to deliver innovative business solutions and, more than ever, industry professionals are engaged in the collaborative development of technical standards and open-source software, aiming for long-term content accessibility and product interoperability.

Launched in 2013, the Readium Foundation objectives are to facilitate the development and the use of the EPUB format created by IDPF. The Readium Foundation focuses on developing open source tools to be used by the industry at large. The European Digital Reading Lab (EDRLab), the European Headquarters of both IDPF and Readium Foundation, is organizing the first international EPUB Summit, an event dedicated to the publishing industry. The Summit is a moment of collaboration, a unique chance to meet and share opinions, concerns, challenges and key achievements with European publishers, distribution platforms, digital stores, suppliers, authors, and public institutions in order to fully understand the potential of the EPUB format. 

Experts selected by EDRLab, the Readium Foundation and IDPF will deliver key updates on EPUB technology, as well as on the editorial and distribution aspects of digital publishing. Meet Ivan Herman (W3C Digital Publishing Activity Lead), Markus Gylling (IDPF Technical Director), Ric Wright (Readium Technical Director), Virginie Clayssen (SNE Digital comittee President), Pierre Danet (EDRLab President), Laurent Le Meur (EDRLab Technical Director), and many more.

Pierre Danet, Head of Innovation at Hachette Livre and President of EDRLab declares: "Digital reading is getting everywhere with the massive adoption of smartphones and tablets. As publishers, we have to answer public expectations in terms of advanced reading experience, and the EPUB format in a good enabler for that. We believe that the first EPUB Summit in Bordeaux will accelerate the collaborative process of development by the TECHNOLOGY sector and the publishing communities."


Early bird until February 15th, 2016

Two lunches and a “degustation” of Bordeaux wine after the first day are included in the cost. 

Press and Contact / Laurence Gauthier – +33 6 636 949 54

First Editor's Draft of EPUB 3.1 Available for Review
February 1, 2016

The EPUB 3 Working Group is pleased to announce that the first Editor's Draft of EPUB 3.1 is now available for community review. A condensed summary of the changes being put forward for review is available in the EPUB 3.1 Changes from 3.0.1 document. The approach taken in this first draft of propositioning potentially controversial changes, in effect as 'trial balloons",  makes timely feedback even more important. 

The primary thrust of this revision is to bring EPUB 3 more in line with the Open Web Platform (OWP). To that end, the HTML syntax of HTML5 is now proposed to have required support in reading systems. resulting in the need for a new cross-syntax compatible method to enrich the markup (i.e., that can work in HTML and XHTML). The working group is proposing a move to the ARIA role attribute coupled with the W3C Digital Publishing WAI-ARIA Module for semantics. This first editor's draft also proposes dropping support for EPUB 2 and for a number of EPUB 3 features that are not broadly compatible with the OWP.

A major reorganization of content is being proposed, with a new EPUB 3.1 top-level specification being added to provide a clear point of entry into the specifications. It defines the overarching publication and reading system requirements, and the EPUB Publications has been renamed to EPUB Packages with a focus on the package document and the construction of renditions of content.

The EPUB Style Sheets profile defined in EPUB 3.0 has similarly been a source of much confusion when it comes to what parts of CSS are supported. This section more clearly establishes the alignment of EPUB with the work of the W3C CSS working groups.

The EPUB 3.1 revision is also being taken as an opportunity to review the overall accessibility of the format. This draft proposes recommending that content documents meet WCAG 2.0 Level AA conformance requirements. 

For more information about all of these proposals, and others, please refer to the EPUB 3.1 Changes from 3.0.1 document. None of the decisions proposed in this draft are final, and all are open to be changed in future drafts. Those affiliated with IDPF member organizations are encouraged to join the IDPF EPUB Working Group email list to participate directly in the development process; feedback can also be provided via email  to the Working Group co-chair Markus Gylling -


IDPF DigiCon@BEA 2016 (fka IDPF Digital Book), Chicago, Theme Announced - Digital: The Channels, The Formats and The Opportunities
January 6, 2016

The theme for our 2016 conference will explore all things Digital: The Channels, The Formats and The Opportunities and will take place in Chicago at the McCormick Center from May 10-11, 2016. Sessions and speakers will provide takeaway information and insights that will benefit members of the industry who are exploring more effective and efficient way to manage their businesses. The Channels programming topics will include retail, education, online communities, international, mobile, data, websites, content (ebook) usage, digital platforms and more. Formats topics will explore EDUPUB, EPUB 3 as well as audio formats, accessible publishing, subscription (domestic and international), data, interactive fiction, rights and licensing and more. Opportunities discussed at IDPF DigiCon 2016 will explore the science of metadata, case studies, lending, standards, best practices, what's coming next and much more. 

Who Should Attend IDPF DigiCon 2016?

There is no better place in the industry to network with your peers and share ideas with digital industry representatives from around the world. In 2015, the IDPF Digital Book Conference attracted attendees from over 26 countries and over 60% of all attendees were c-suite or senior director level executives with decision making and buying power. For those who want to expand their digital knowledge and expertise and be in the know on cutting edge technology and business initiatives, make sure you join executives and professionals across the publishing industry at our new venue where there is plenty of space for networking with your digital colleagues, sponsors and the many experts who will be the conference. This conference sells out annually so do not miss out! Register here

Current sponsors for IDPF DigiCon 2016 include: OverDrive, SPi Global, VitalSource (Platinum), BookBub (Gold), Apex Covantage (Silver). For sponsorship packages and pricing, please contact Wendy Erman Wels at For programming inquiries or to submit a proposal, please contact Sally Dedecker at 

EDUPUB Alliance, EPUB Accessibility Meetings in Baltimore, February 24-25, 2016
January 6, 2016

The next meeting of the EDUPUB Alliance, together with a related summit on EPUB Accessibility and Certification, will take place on February 24-25 2016 near Baltimore, Maryland. The events will be co-hosted by IDPF and IMS Global, in conjunction with IMS Global's next Quarterly Meeting, sponsored by University of Maryland College. The theme of day one will be "EPUB Accessibility as a Baseline" and will bring together speakers and participants to establish key requirements and critical tasks necessary for the EPUB ecosystem to fully support current and future accessibility mandates. The keynote speaker will be George Kerscher, Secretary-General of the DAISY Consortium and President of the IDPF Board of Directors. Day two till kick off with EDUPUB Alliance sessions focused on coordinating open standards for learning content and systems, followed by a technical workshop on EPUB certification implementation. A preliminary agenda has been published and registration is now open to all interested parties with options to attend both days ($200) or day one only ($150).