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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.


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).

La Solidarité
November 17, 2015


The IDPF condemns the outrageous and tragic attacks in Paris which have taken the lives of at least two members of the French publishing industry. We stand in solidarity with our many friends, colleagues and members in France. Access to information and knowledge is the single most powerful tool available to promote world peace. IDPF supports this wholeheartedly through its mission to increase access to information and content on a global basis by fostering open standards. We can not and will not let terrorism prevent the advancement of global knowledge, peace and prosperity so we will continue to promote these ends as one element of the fight against barbarism. The IDPF grieves for all the victims and we extend our sincere condolences to their families.

EDRLab Appoints CTO, Evangelist
November 16, 2015
The European Digital Reading Laboratory (EDRLab), recently established to host IDPF Europe and Readium Europe operations, has appointed Laurent Le Meur (@lmrlaurent) as its founding CTO. Laurent will take overall responsibility for day-to-day operations of the Lab as well as in setting strategic direction and coordinations with IDPF, Readium Foundation, and other stakeholders in the global EPUB platform.
Laurent brings an extensive background in overseeing development of software solutions and open standards, including leading the development for IPTC NewsML G2 while heading the Médialab at Agence France Presse. More recently he was head of R&D for media companies UniversCiné and AlloCiné .
In addition, Cyril Labordrie (@Cyril_EDRLab) has been nominated as the EPUB evangelist for IDPF Europe and Readium Europe, jointly appointed with Cap Digital, the French cluster for digital innovation, which is hosting the EDRLab offices. Cyril brings a strong background in software and video game development, and project management..
"EDRLAB Board and I are very pleased to welcome Laurent and Cyril." said Pierre Danet, President, EDRLab, Board member, IDPF and Readium Foundation, and Director Innovation and Digital Technology, Hachette-Livre Group. " With their arrival and engagement we're now advancing our planning in order to actively participate in the creation of new services around the EPUB open standard and Readium open source software, in a perfect coordination and deep partnership with Readium Foundation and IDPF".

IDPF and SSP Partner on New Academic & Professional Publishing Track at IDPF Digital Conference at BEA 2016
November 16, 2015
The International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) and the Society for Scholarly Publishing (SSP) today announced that SSP is co-sponsoring a new Academic and Professional Publishing track at the IDPF Digital Conference at BookExpo America 2016 (May 11-12, McCormick Place, Chicago). IDPF Digital @ BEA is the longest-running professional conference for the digital publishing industry. This year's conference will focus on the digital transformation of the overall enterprise of publishing.
IDPF Board member and SSP Past President Bill Kasdorf, VP Content Solutions Apex CoVantage, will serve as program director for the sessions in the new track, which will cover key digital issues that affect all segments of academic and professional publishing, including scholarly journals and books; scientific, technical, and medical publishers; and publishers of educational, training, and professional content. These sectors are, in some respects, far in advance of most other publishing sectors in embracing digital technologies, and yet in other respects have much to gain from today's digital ecosystem– from content acquisition, development, and management to dissemination throughout today's multi-channel, increasingly mobile world.
Speaker and session proposals for IDPF Digital @ BEA 2016 are solicited by Dec. 18, via email to Sally Dedecker at . For sponsorship information, please email Wendy Wels.
Platinum sponsors of the IDPF Digital @ BEA 2016 are OverDrive, SPi Global, and VitalSource.

EPUB 3.1 Revision Kicks Off - Soliciting Member Feedback on Deprecations
November 16, 2015
Work on the EPUB 3.1 revision kicked off on Oct. 8-9 with an initial F2F meeting in NYC, Over 30 participants attended, not including many who dialed in remotely, and the EPUB Working Group is now holding weekly conference calls to continue the discussions, with breakout sub-teams working on key priorities. As part of the work-plan, there is consideration of potentially deprecating several specialized EPUB constructs that have not been widely adopted, in order to simplify EPUB specifications and improve alignment of EPUB with the broader Open Web Platform. To help the Working Group better understand the current situation, IDPF members who produce EPUB content are invited to complete a short survey by December 15. Aggregate results of the survey will be a key input to the EPUB 3.1 process, so your feedback is very important to us. All IDPF members are also invited to participate in the EPUB 3.1 revision and other IDPF standards development activities (join the umbrella EPUB WG Google Group
here, indicating your member organization affiliation if not part of your email address).

EPUB Extensions for Indexes, Dictionaries, Advanced Layout Approved
August 26, 2015
Five modular extensions to EPUB 3.0.1 have been approved as final Recommended Specifications.  The specifications include:
EPUB Indexes 1.0 
EPUB Dictionaries and Glossaries 1.0
EPUB Previews 1.0
EPUB Multiple-Rendition Publications 1.0
EPUB Region-Based Navigation 1.0
IDPF membership organizations voted overwhelmingly in favor of approval, with no specification receiving more than one "no" vote or two "abstain" votes. More information about these specifications and other IDPF current work is available at

IDPF To Open European Headquarters in Paris
August 24, 2015

The International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF) will later this year formally launch a new European headquarters in Paris, France. IDPF Europe will be co-located with European headquarters for the affiliated Readium Foundation (, hosted by a newly created European Digital Reading Lab (EDRLab). EDRLab has been formed with the support of the French government and industry stakeholders, with  1.5 million Euros of incremental funding already committed. The overall goal of the iniitative is to promote EPUB and Web technologies for publishing, fostering open standards and open source development in order to improve availability, accessibility, and interoperability of digital publications. The European Digital Reading Lab will be located in central Paris within the facilities of Cap Digital, an innovation and business accelerator dedicated to the development of the digital economy in France and the Paris region. EDRLab has already begun to recruit key staff, beginning with its CTO.