China Backs Copyright Complaints, To Hell With Books, and More

Adrian Versteegh

Every day Poets & Writers Magazine scans the headlines—from publishing reports to academic announcements to literary dispatches—for all the news that creative writers need to know. Here are today's stories:

A spokesperson for Barnes & Noble said yesterday that online demand for the Nook has delayed the in-store launch of the device until December 7 (Wall Street Journal).

Google’s book-scanning project is “probably” a violation of Chinese copyright law, says the country’s National Copyright Administration, which is supporting accusations leveled against the Internet giant recently by local writers groups (Independent).

After an unsuccessful bid to find a new owner, Indianapolis’s only gay and lesbian bookstore plans to close its doors just after Christmas (Indianapolis Star).

A new literary hub in Melbourne, Australia—which will house the Australian Poetry Centre, the Emerging Writers Festival, and the local chapter of PEN International—has been named after the founders of the Lonely Planet travel guide series (Melbourne Leader).

Dubai’s recent decision to suspend its debt payments has left the Education Media and Publishing Group (EMPG)—the parent company of publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt—on uncertain financial ground (Irish Independent).

Meanwhile, the government in neighboring Arab Emirate Sharjah is winning praise from UNESCO for its "Knowledge Without Borders" program, which aims to provide free home libraries of fifty books each to forty-two thousand local families (Publishing Perspectives).

The Washington Post—which will close its three remaining bureaus in Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York City by the end of the year—is hoping to generate extra revenue with an Amazon-backed online bookstore (TechFlash).

Indie collective To Hell with Publishing will open what cofounder Laurence Johns describes as a “tastemaking boutique” in London next week (Bookseller).