Saturday, September 21, 2013

Modern Family Star Lends Voice Talent to Enhanced eBook on Food Allergies


Emmy Award-winning actress Julie Bowen, a star of ABC’s comedy Modern Family, has lent her voice talent to the narration of an enhanced ebook aimed at educating readers on the dangers of deadly food allergies, especially in public schools. Bowen, who plays Claire Dunphy on the series, has a special focus on anaphylaxis awareness as she is the mother of a child with life-threatening food allergies.

According to a press release, “As part of her work to support the Get Schooled in Anaphylaxis health initiative, Julie has lent her voice to narrate an online book to raise awareness of and preparedness for life-threatening allergic reactions, or anaphylaxis. This issue is personal for Julie because her oldest son is among the estimated one in 13 U.S. kids who live with a severe food allergy.

“The e-book, titled The Adventures of Ana and Phyl: The Carnival, follows brother and sister duo Ana and Phyl Axis as they work with parents, teachers and other children to plan an allergy-friendly event at their school. Through the story, readers learn about the importance of avoiding people's allergens, knowing the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis, having access to two epinephrine auto-injectors, and being prepared to respond if anaphylaxis occurs.”

“As the mother of a child with life-threatening allergies, I know how important it is to talk frequently with my child and the people who care for him about this topic,” said Bowen, whose oldest son is allergic to peanuts, tree nuts and bee stings. “This e-book offers a great, new way to continue the conversation about the seriousness of anaphylaxis and the importance of avoiding known allergens. The Adventures of Ana and Phyl provides us all with a good reminder of the steps we need to take to be prepared if anaphylaxis occurs.”

The ebook and other instructional materials are available for free, and serves a guide to help parents and educators understand how to speak to students about this condition. For a free copy, go to

Modern Family Star Lends Voice Talent to Enhanced eBook on Food Allergies is a post from: E-Reader News

Goodreads Modifies User Terms to Prevent Author Bullying, Reviewers Outraged


After the recent pivotal blowup of author bullying and harassment on book discovery website Goodreads, an issue that has apparently been ongoing but only within the last month received the global attention it now faces, leadership at the site made a startling announcement last night by finally stepping in and publishing guidelines that have been put into effect to prevent future conflict. The issue now is that reviewers have taken to the Goodreads announcement to voice their complaints over what they feel is censorship, criticizing Goodreads for not allowing them to continue with their negativity aimed at individuals, rather than books.

In an announcement HERE, Director of Customer Care “Kara” makes the announcement that author attacks will no longer be allowed on Goodreads. Users are welcomed and encouraged to continue posting their honest feelings about books, but remarks, shelves, and posts about authors themselves will be deleted. This is welcome news to groups like and a host of other authors who emerged during this recent news to share not only their stories of bullying, but also screen shots to back them up.

Now, it’s the Goodreads community that is firing back at the website itself, claiming censorship and supporting the justification to target authors whom they believe are deserving of being ridiculed and threatened. The comments below Goodreads’ anti-bullying announcement are very telling of the type of behavior that was taking place, most of it aimed at authors.

For the authors’ part, Goodreads posted author guidelines earlier this year, warning them of the potential for backlash if authors–who have not all been the proverbial saints, to be sure, but have engaged in ugly diatribe and specifically called out by name reviewers who did not like their books–comment on reviews of their works.

Where authors were threatening a mass account cancellation to protest the bullying, many of the reader users who commented on the announcement are now threatening the same thing. And while much of this might seem like nothing more than petty playground behavior between children who honestly do not have a clear good guy or bad guy, keep in mind that several ebook retailers incorporate the Goodreads’ API into their sales pages, effectively posting book reviews that many in the Goodreads community knew to be false, and nothing more than an act of revenge against an author; real-world sales decisions have been made by consumers based on these reviews.

There is no clear answer as to what Goodreads should or should not do with this scenario. Authors have called for stricter guidelines concerning user behavior, and reviewers have rightfully rebutted that the site is for readers, not for authors. Hopefully some sense of common support for both parties can be reached before the site becomes obsolete.

Goodreads Modifies User Terms to Prevent Author Bullying, Reviewers Outraged is a post from: E-Reader News

SingTel Decides To Brings Curtains Down On Skoob


SingTel has announced they are winding up their e-book business Skoob. The process is starting off on September 24th, which is when all sales from the store will come to an end; the entire store will cease to exist after November 5. This marks the closure of Singapore's second e-book store, coming within just months of MediaCorp closing down a similar venture,

SingTel didn't reveal any exact reasons to explain their move expect that they are keen to focus on other areas which they believe have a bigger growth potential. SingTel had earlier brought down shutters on its magazine app store, de!ite, last year, less than two years after its inception.

Skoob (spelt Books backward) has had a fairly good run at the Google Play Store where it has earned a three star rating. However, increasing competition from the likes of global majors such as Amazon could be the reason behind Skoob's demise.

SingTel Decides To Brings Curtains Down On Skoob is a post from: E-Reader News