January 18, 2022

LYRASIS and Michigan Publishing Advance Community-owned, Publishing Ecosystem for eBook Distribution and Reading with Open-source System Integration

From a LYRASIS Announcement:

LYRASIS and Michigan Publishing announce the successful integration of the Fulcrum platform with Library Simplified/SimplyE and The Readium Foundation’s Thorium Desktop Reader.

This initiative brings together three open source reading and content delivery platforms, utilizing entirely open standards and technologies. By working together, the partners are improving discovery and access for ebooks and supporting the sustainability and scalability of two community-led social enterprises.

Five years ago, Michigan Publishing and LYRASIS entered into a multifaceted strategic relationship with the goal of advancing scholarly communications and improving access to high quality ebooks to academic, public, consortia, and state libraries. This project represents yet another step toward that goal.

The initial integration is focused on making hundreds of open access books from University of Michigan Press, Lever Press, Amherst College Press, and other academic presses using Fulcrum available in SimplyE and Thorium Desktop Reader through a set of open protocols. Users can now choose to read content on Mobile, Desktop, and Web as they prefer. The ebooks can be read on mobile applications such as SimplyE, desktop readers such as Thorium Desktop reader, an open source accessibility desktop reader provided by EDRL (European Digital Reading Lab) for users, and lastly Fulcrum’s own web e-reader.

The adoption of the Open Publication Distribution System (OPDS) protocol, core to the integration, lays the foundation for other open technologies such as licensed content protection (LPC) DRM and Readium Desktop available to academic publishers, distributors, and libraries. The Thorium Reader renders EPUB3s in a way that is highly accessible for visually-impaired and dyslexic readers. It is free, with no ads and no leaks of private data, making it the perfect tools for heavy readers, library patrons, and students.

Learn More, Read the Complete Announcement; Includes Comments From:

  • James English, Product Strategist for LYRASIS
  • Jeremy Morse, Director of Publishing Technology at Michigan Publishing
  • Robert Miller, CEO of LYRASIS

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.