Archive for Pottermore
The Bookseller Industry awards has just occurred in the United Kingdom and Pottermore came away with a huge victory. The Harry Potter focused digital company beat out some hefty competition by Random House, Harlequin, Kobo, Penguin, and Bloomsbury.
The Pottermore strategy as a gateway to sell ebooks has been a bit of a case study on how to start an e-commerce site and maintain control over the entire experience. Normally, books are sold and distributed by the publisher and seldom does the author maintain any control over the companies that send the books to libraries and bookstores, let alone international rights and sales.
The essence of Pottermore was to serve as an online destination for people to buy the entire Harry Potter series and their spin-off books. The crew at Pottermore established their own prices and were not held at gunpoint by any outside publishing interest. The books are compatible with almost every major e-reader and tablet, in Kindle and EPUB formats. The one big factor is Pottermore is hardware agnostic, they don’t lock you into a specific device to enjoy reading the books.
Being able to truly enjoy a book, means that you should be able to load it on your phone, tablet, and e-reader without having to rely on bulky third party programs like Adobe Digital Editions. Pottermore took the innovative approach of ditching Digital Rights Management altogether and instead went with digital watermarks. These watermarks bind the owners information on the cover of the book, putting the onus on them if they decide to pirate the books.
The one thing Pottermore did was adopt the trans media approach, which few companies in the world have been able to match. Not only can you visit their website to buy and read the books, but they made an online world to live out the Harry Potter adventures. Every few months, new content is implemented and young folk can join in picking their House, engaging in wizard duels, making potions, visiting Diagon Alley, and getting up to all sorts of other hijinx.
It is no small wonder that Pottermore won the Digital Strategy of the Year Award in the UK. The entire team has been doing a stellar job in adjusting to the digital space and blazing their own trail.
After the success of JK Rowling’s interactive fan site Pottermore, based on the internationally bestselling books about the wizarding world of Harry Potter, and its collaboration with Sony to create an interactive video game for the Playstation system called Wonderbook: Book of Spells, Pottermore’s team is once again building a gaming experience for diehard fans.
Launching with two online experiences that allow users to enter Harry’s world as avatars and go exploring, the Pottermore creation for Playstation Home will take participants exploring through the famed wizard market of Diagon Alley and for a ride on the mysterious Hogwarts Express, the train that carries young wizards to the secret school. Apart from taking users into Harry’s world, the Pottermore and Sony partnership will also invite players to participate in mini-games, quizzes, and more.
“Pottermore reaches across multiple digital platforms, and Sony’s partnership has allowed us to forge this exciting connection with PlayStation Home, creating the most immersive experience possible within that space and giving users wonderful new ways to explore locations from the Harry Potter stories,” said Pottermore CEO Charlie Redmayne on the Pottermore Insider blog. “Following the successful launch of Wonderbook: Book of Spells [also with Sony], this is another example of the creative collaborations Pottermore is developing to bring the world of Harry Potter even more ingeniously to life.”
Launching next month, the game will also allow existing Pottermore users to link their online accounts to the game for the chance to see all new features and discover new twists in both the game and the website.
Some reports have shown that author JK Rowling is the first billionaire to actually lose the privilege being called a billionaire for donating so much money to charity that she lost that title. It probably doesn’t bother her that much, especially if today’s announcement is any indication.
Pottermore, the interactive site created by Rowling’s company of the same name, will release two titles that were previously only available in print, with a large portion of the proceeds going to charity Comic Relief. When Rowling initially wrote the two titles, Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the were created with the charity in mind. Now the Comic Relief is hosting its Red Nose Day, and the titles will be available digitally through Pottermore.com with 40% of the purchase price going to the organization.
“J.K. Rowling has long been associated with Comic Relief,” said Alex King, head of marketing at Pottermore, “so we were really keen to highlight to givers and supporters of the charity that the eBooks of Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them are now available – with at least £1.15 from every sale going to Comic Relief. The new generation of Red Nose Day participants will now be able to discover the eBooks for the first time, via social media channels – and we are enlisting the support of the loyal Pottermore community to help get the Red Nose Day message out too.”
The entire digital catalog of available Harry Potter titles, along with the two new digital titles that benefit Comic Relief, are available for sale at Pottermore.com.
When JK Rowling created her online interactive world of Harry Potter, aptly named Pottermore, it became a portal for wizarding fans to gather, learn new material from the creation of the books, and interact with both the author and her fans. One of the features that keeps it an engaging platform for the readers is the ever-evolving landscape of the site as the author and Pottermore staff continue to bring new updates from the story lines.
Just in time for the school holidays when restless students find themselves with a bulk of free time, Pottermore has unveiled some new content, specifically from the first seven chapters of the book, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.
According to the press release, “this latest installment includes a wealth of free and never-before-seen content from J.K. Rowling, exclusively available at Pottermore.com, featuring some of the characters, places, objects and creatures that populate the third book in the much-loved series. We can learn about famous Boggarts of the past, what Dumbledore gave Hagrid’s predecessor Professor Kettleburn on his retirement and the origin of the wizard adage ‘I’ll take Cadogan’s pony,’ amongst many other fascinating pieces of background and insight into the books.”
Pottermore is a free fan-site that is powered by Sony; Sony also partnered with the boy wizard’s creators to develop the interactive Playstation game, The Book of Spells, which allows users to enter the game and cast spells in order to experience the world of magic. The site is also the only location to purchase the Harry Potter ebooks, which are now available with a built-in delay to give them as gifts.
Charlie Redmayne spoke on two panels today in London at the FutureBook conference, the third annual conference put on by The Bookseller. Aside from the morning presentation in which he spoke on the importance of establishing a global brand for an author or a book series, Redmayne spoke quite vehemently in the later panel about how the practice of DRM-free ebooks can be better for publishing.
According to Redmayne, the Harry Potter ebooks were published without the restrictions imposed by digital rights management, allowing readers to put them on any device and allowing the sharing of the ebooks, similar to their print counterparts.
Despite some criticism about piracy concerns, Redmayne countered with evidence that piracy of the Harry Potter titles is actually 25% lower than when the titles were only available in print; additionally, he recounted incidences when the ebooks were actually placed on file sharing websites, but most were quickly removed when it became known that all of the ebooks are sold with an embedded digital watermark, essentially tracking the person who uploaded the pirated copy.
This ability to track an ebook stands to be a potential deterrent to piracy, especially if publishers are actually able to hold offenders accountable without creating a bigger problem in trying to prosecute offenders.
With the holiday season coming up, the website devoted to Harry Potter is ready. Pottermore is the only place in the world where you can buy the digital versions of the entire Harry Potter saga and the official off-shoots. Pottermore has announced today that the site is launching a new Gifting service, that will allow you to buy the ebooks and have them sent to a lucky recipient.
Pottermore has its new service located at shop.pottermore.com. You can customize a personal message for the recipient and specify the delivery date. There are options to send it out up to six months in advance. This applies to both ebooks and the audiobook versions of Harry Potter. The digital editions can be read on most e-readers and tablets, so you are good to go.
This is the very first year that the Harry Potter digital library is available to users during the holiday season. It will be very interesting to track the sales statistics to see if people are taking advantage of the gifting service.
JK Rowling’s interactive Harry Potter site Pottermore released new chapters in the second installment in the boy wizard’s series yesterday, including the final chapters of the title Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. New features on the world building site include an insider view into the Slytherin house, a gaming experience allowing users to fight creatures in the Forbidden Forest, and a closer look at various characters introduced in that book.
Each release on Pottermore also includes more information from the author that was not a part of the published books, giving fans a more in-depth awareness of the story line, the setting, the characters, and more. Often these additional features are developed from the author’s original notebook she kept while writing the series.
Rowling established the Pottermore site as both a breeding ground for fan-based discussions on the series and an interactive creation for readers who continue to love the wizarding world, despite the finale of the series. It also serves as the exclusive retailer of the Harry Potter ebooks, as Rowling originally retained all future digital rights to the books when they were first published in print. The author originally maintained that the Harry Potter series is complete and there will be no future titles to come from it, but has recently suggested that another Harry Potter book might be something she would consider in the future.
JK Rowling, author of the highly acclaimed bestselling Harry Potter series, spoke to over one million fans yesterday in a live webcast through Scholastic, Inc. The nearly hour-long webcast, broadcast via the internet to nearly a million students around the world, allowed participants to ask questions, learn more about the motivation behind the series, and garner interest in the Harry Potter Reading Club. Perhaps the most interesting turn of events during the broadcast, however, was Rowling’s admission that her next project will probably be a return to children’s literature, although she has spoken plainly in the past that she believes she is finished with the world of Harry Potter.
During the event, Rowling shared some behind-the-scenes and personal stories from her experiences with Harry Potter, such as registering herself on the Pottermore interactive website and finding out that the Sorting Hat had placed her in Gryffindor house, to the amusement of her young fans.
“We’re delighted that so many educators, parents and kids tuned into the live webcast and registered for The Harry Potter Reading Club, and we thank J.K. Rowling for sharing the magic of Harry Potter and her love of books and writing with our enthusiastic webcast audience,” said Ellie Berger, President, Scholastic Trade. “Scholastic has been in conversation with teachers, librarians, parents and other book lovers about ideas for bringing the Harry Potter books to new readers in exciting and different ways, and the webcast and Reading Club give us the perfect way to do that.”
Much of the focus of the event was to let participants know more about the Reading Club, along with informing educators, parents, and librarians about the options to find materials online to host their own local book clubs surrounding the world of the boy wizard. The full broadcast can be viewed HERE.
Many kids are finding themselves back in the classroom wallowing in the doldrums, but their online alter-egos can find some solace in some new updates from J.K Rowling’s virtual world, Pottermore. Young wizards attending Hogwarts are enjoying the second installment of the Chamber of Secrets, which encompasses chapters five to eleven.
This latest edition to the Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets storyline allows you to fly back to Hogwarts, encounter the Whomping Willow, and test your herding skills by recapturing the Cornish pixies. Venture into Moaning Myrtle’s bathroom, learn about the legend of the Chamber of Secrets, and much more. Pottermore Students will now be able to update their status on their profiles and there are new badges to discover and add to your collection.
Pottermore launched to the public in April after being available for around five months to BETA users. Many new users are showing their disdain on lack of new content. This is not deterring people from playing with all the new features found in the latest update. Over 39.9 million “wizard duels” have been fought and 4.2 million attempts were made to make a potion. Unfortunately, people need some help with their mixing skills as there is a paltry 32% success rate. The first house cup was awarded on July 5th to Slytherin, and the next one will take place in November.
While parents might hesitate to hand Junior a $600 tablet to read a book, more and more parents are seeing the value in guiding young children through the basics of tablet computing. As a 21st century skill, tech savvy parents are responding to the wealth of content available for tablets in order to prepare their kids for the kinds of technological expectations they may find in school.
And the publishers are responding in kind. Several large children’s digital content developers launched new titles and features this week, aimed specifically at the younger tablet and computer users.
Oceanhouse Media, publishers of all of the digitized Dr. Seuss titles, launched a Dr. Seuss Bookshelf app, available free in the iTunes store, that will serve as a comprehensive location for all of the interactive Dr. Seuss app books.
Scholastic initially announced the launch yesterday of its Clifford’s Big Birthday app as a celebration of the beloved dog’s 50th anniversary, but then followed up today with a press release announcing the the Clifford app had reached the top ten on iTunes in two different categories, reaching both within the first 24 hours of the release.
Finally, JK Rowling’s fully interactive Pottermore website announced a few moments ago that new chapters—and thus, new adventures—had been added to the fan site. The second installment of chapters from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is now open to Pottermore users, along with exclusive content from the author.
While children’s books may not be the main source of ebook sales for publishers, many are developing the market, knowing that today’s app book reader is tomorrow’s ebook consumer.
The Pottermore website marked the first time the entire Harry Potter saga hit the digital sphere. Sales have been quite brisk with millions of books sold since the service first launched earlier this year. Today, the expanded universe of books are now officially on sale with Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
A copy of Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them resides in almost every wizarding household in the country. Now Muggles too have the chance to discover where the Quintaped lives, what the Puffskein eats, and why it is best not to leave milk out for a Knarl.
If you have ever asked yourself where the Golden Snitch came from, how the Bludgers came into existence, or why the Wigtown Wanderers have pictures of meat cleavers on their robes, you need Quidditch Through the Ages. This edition is a copy of the volume in Hogwarts School Library, where it is consulted by young Quidditch fans on an almost daily basis.
Both of these ebooks are available on virtually any e-reader in the world and retail for around $4.00 each. Check them out today on Pottermore HERE.
JK Rowling, the creator of the internationally renowned Harry Potter series, has partnered with the largest publisher of children’s content, Scholastic, to present a live webcast event for fans to kick off the new Harry Potter Reading Club.
“At 12:00 noon ET (9:00am PT / 5:00pm GMT) on Thursday, October 11, J.K. Rowling will participate in a live virtual author visit to classrooms across America to discuss the world of Harry Potter including Pottermore (www.pottermore.com), an exciting, free online experience that offers Harry Potter fans the chance to explore and discover exclusive new writing by J.K. Rowling as well as immerse themselves in other interactive content and community activities,” according to a press release from Scholastic today.
The Harry Potter club itself will provide a host of activities and accessories for anyone interested in engaging a new set of young readers in the world of the boy wizard. Teachers, librarians, and parents can access the additional features by being one of the first 10,000 to sign up in the US; those who work with young readers in some for outside of the classroom or outside of the US but are still interested in the club’s additional features will be able to download them from the website.
The club’s growth is in direct response to the interaction among reader fans of the series, especially through the interactive Pottermore site. Continuing with the online social aspect of the series as a whole, the Harry Potter Reading Club will also maintain a live Twitter feed for fans at #hpREADS.
To sign up for the webcast or the reading club, go to www.scholastic.com/hpreadingclub and register.
Pottermore has just released The Chamber of Secrets on its interactive website. The final two installments of the book are set to debut later this year. This allows kids and adults alike who use the interactive aspect of the website to mix potions and duel with fellow wizards.
“There’s plenty to discover and enjoy: read more exclusive writing from J K Rowling; view The Burrow for the first time, de-gnome the garden and collect your second-year shopping list, along with more Galleons, for another visit to Diagon Alley.”
Pottermore has been a critical success as a gateway to purchase the entire Harry Potter eBook series. The interactive aspects have given a new generation of kids the ability to play a minor character alongside the adventures of Harry Potter.