Midwest Tape to Publish More eAudio as Book on CD

November 25, 2013

One troubling trend of late has been the number of even bestselling titles, particularly on the non-fiction NYT list, that don’t get produced as a book on CD. In many cases, a look at Amazon’s link for the title will reveal that the only audio edition listed for it is a downloadable file on Amazon’s Audible service, a totally private marketplace for the individual consumer that doesn’t help libraries provide the content to the borrowing public.  This is one of the most common reasons I have to reject talking book RINCs, next to just being out of print.

One likely source of this problem is just the economics of producing audio.  Gregg Olsen, a mystery author we invited to our Reader’s Advisory training in December, 2012, explained that authors get particularly beneficial terms for producing an eAudio on Audible, while consumers often pay much less than they would for physical CD’s.  It’s no wonder that an exclusively downloadable edition is attractive.  

This might continue to be the case, but one new development seems to hold out some hope for us.  Midwest Tape, our key media vendor, has reached an agreement with publishers HarperCollins and Simon & Schuster to take some of their exclusive downloadable titles, on request, and produce physical CD’s for the library market.  For the sake of our audiobook listeners, we can hope this arrangement is successful and more like it are on the horizon.

Thanks Lorraine for pointing this story out to me.


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