Barnes & Noble To Share Reader Data With Publishers?

Barnes & Noble To Share Reader Data With Publishers?

via Digital Book World

At a Digital Book World conference earlier this week, Jim Hilt, vice president of eBooks at Barnes & Noble, said the bookseller plans to share more data about readers with publishers. 

He didn't explain what he meant by that, but on first blush, it sounds a bit Orwellian. 

Then there's this, from Digital Book World: 

Sharing of reader data between retailers and publishers may be closer to reality because of new technology. The EPUB 3 publishing language, for instance, allows for JavaScript to be embedded in [eBooks], which would theoretically allow publishers to track their readers’ reading habits – if only retailers would allow that code in the books it sells and build [eReader] software capable of supporting such technology.

So, that's something I've never really given a lot of thought to. I guess it wouldn't be too hard for an outside source to keep track of my Kindle reading roster. I mean, remember when Amazon remotely deleted books by George Orwell from Kindles, and we though it was made up because, c'mon, but it really happened?!?

Today's discussion topic: Does the proliferation of eBooks make you concerned about privacy issues? Have any of you shunned eBooks specifically because of concerns about privacy? 

Image of 1984
Manufacturer: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Part Number:
Rob Hart

News by Rob Hart

Rob Hart is the class director at LitReactor, as well as the publisher at He's the author of New Yorked, nominated for the Anthony Award for Best First Novel, as well as City of Rose and South Village. Short stories have appeared in publications like Shotgun Honey, Thuglit, Needle, Joyland, All Due Respect, and Helix Literary Magazine. Non-fiction has appeared at Salon, The Daily Beast, Birth.Movies.Death, The Literary Hub, Electric Literature, and Nailed. He lives in New York City. Find him online at

To leave a comment Login with Facebook or create a free account.


Joshua Chaplinsky's picture
Joshua Chaplinsky from New York is reading A lot of Brian Evenson January 26, 2012 - 1:47pm

Love the header.

Daniel Donche's picture
Daniel Donche from Seattle is reading Transubstantiate, by Richard Thomas January 26, 2012 - 4:12pm

I don't have any concerns about privacy, in any fashion. Let them use my information for whatever they want, I still have the freedom to make my own choices, no matter how much they try to push me otherwise. A lot of people live many separate lives - private life, school life, professional life, online life - I just live one. But that may not work for some, so yeah. There should always be a way to opt out. And by the way, the FBI doesn't have a file on everybody.