Technology • Innovation • Publishing — Issue #128


Perfect Corp., developer of virtual try-on beauty app YouCam Makeup, closes $50 million Series C led by Goldman

HT @BoSacks


Twitter acquires social podcasting app Breaker, team to help build Twitter’s new audio-based networking project, Twitter Spaces

Amazon Buys Planes From Airlines Struggling With Pandemic

Haven, the Amazon-Berkshire-JPMorgan venture to disrupt health care, is disbanding after 3 years
The announcement in 2018 that the CEOs of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase had teamed up sent shock waves throughout the world of health care.

Amazon Is Booting Parler Off Of Its Web Hosting Service


Discord bans pro-Trump server ‘The Donald’
Discord has banned The Donald server, which had connections to banned subreddit r/The_Donald and, another pro-Trump community. The ban comes two days after a pro-Trump mob stormed the US Capitol, encouraged by President Trump, though Discord says that it has no evidence that the server was used to organize the riots.

Publishing & Media

Is a $500 million Wattpad sale imminent?

90 million Wattpad monthly users spend 23 billion minutes online each month. There is speculation that Amazon or Tencent wants to buy it.

Some small-town newspapers have called on their own reporters and editors to deliver papers amid USPS delays.

USPS delays are threatening small-town newspapers. So is a postage price increase. Historic volumes of packages have gummed up the Postal Service, and community newspapers are getting caught in the mail backlog.

Job cuts in media topped 30,000 in
The media industry was racked by a record 30,711 job cuts in 2020 — a stunning increase of 201 percent from the year earlier when 10,201 jobs were lost.

Over 500 journalists died from COVID-19 in
COVID-19 claimed the lives of over 500 journalists in 2020, according to the Save Journalism Project.

Wiley buys Sci Publisher Hindawi for $298m to increase Open Access

Roku Acquires Rights to Quibi’s Content

MT @michellemanafy Roku agreed to acquire the rights to content from Quibi, a deal that will make the defunct short-form streaming service’s shows available on the biggest streaming-media player in the U.S.

‘Travel + Leisure’ Sold To Wyndham Destinations for $100M, Meredith Will Continue To Operate

Hedge fund’s bid to buy rest of Tribune Publishing met with
The hedge fund trying to take over Tribune Publishing — owner of the Chicago Tribune, the New York Daily News and seven other newspapers — is running into strong resistance from a union representing its journalists as well as some shareholders.

B&N Founder Makes $250K Donation to Poets & Writers

ICYMI Poets & Writers wrapped up its 50th anniversary in 2020 by announcing a $250,000 contribution from Barnes & Noble founder Len Riggio and his wife, Louise, which will be used for new initiatives to extend the organization’s support of Black and marginalized writers.

Need healing for the new year? A new Philly hotline offers poems of
A new, healing poem will be featured each Monday throughout the year.

PW Launches New U.S. Book Trade Fair for

The U.S. Book Show will run virtually May 26–28 and will offer events and programming for the domestic and international publishing industry, including booksellers, librarians, publishers, and self-published authors.

IPG launches international publishing

The Independent Publishers Guild is launching a virtual international publishing forum, which will take place on March 9th–10th.

HarperCollins Will Raise Minimum Salaries to $45,000

HarperCollins will become the last of the big five publishers to raise minimum salaries to $45,000 for employees based in New York and San Francisco, effective January 18, in an agreement they made with the HarperCollins Union on Friday.

A Rare Books Librarian is Uncovering the Women Writers of Years


Rooting Out Racism In Children’s

HT @publishingtrend

Duchess Camilla Is Starting Her Own Book

2020 in the Book Biz Was a Year Unlike Any
The combination of the pandemic and demands for social justice led to widespread changes in publishing in 2020.

How Politics, Protests and the Pandemic Shaped a Year in
From “American Dirt” to “Apropos of Nothing” to “A Promised Land,” here is what happened in the literary and publishing world’s unforgettable 2020.

Indies to Customers: ‘We Couldn’t Have Made It Through this Year Without You’


Adweek Acquires Social Media Week

Opportunities & Resources

Media Literacy Toolkit — PEN

MT @PENamerica As an onslaught of misleading content infiltrates our news feeds, it is vital that we all become more discerning consumers of information & news. Check out our Media Literacy Toolkit for tips on how identify and prevent the spread of false information.

A beginner’s guide to moving from written journalism to audio

MT @michellemanafy If you are used to typing your articles, a new career in radio or podcasting may seem daunting. Here are five tips on how to write for the ear via @journalismnews

SCBWI BIPOC Scholarship

MT @DiandraMae If you are a BIPOC creator & SCBWI member, please check out the SCBWI BIPOC Scholarships! This year there will ten scholarships awarded to Black, Indigenous and People of Color, with five of the scholarships reserved for women. #kidlit #kidlitart @diversebooks

Compilation of BIPOC 2021 Book

RT @jbakernyc Updated: Compilation of #BIPOC Book Release Links now includes @melanin_ya and @CrazyQuilts respective lists incl. #BIPOCDebuts

Roxane Gay’s Audacity Book Club

RT @rgay The Audacious Book Club discussion with Jenna Wortham and Kimberly Drew will take place on 1/26 at 5 PST/8 EST. The Zoom link will be shared via my newsletter at It will be open to both paid and unpaid subscribers, and there will be ASL interpreters.

Free Podcast

MT @YouthonRecord FREE podcast workshop for ages 14–20! Please share and tag a friend who wants to learn about podcasting. This is a free workshop but registration is required. #podcasting #podcastworkshop #podcastcommunity

The Deadline Club Awards

MT @KatinaParon HEY NYC JOURNALISTS!!! The 2021 Deadline Club Awards competition is now accepting entries. Enter your best work from 2020 to win a “Rube,” an award statuette designed by legendary cartoonist Rube Goldberg.

#OwnVoices, Own Stories Award

MT @wordisdiversity The #OwnVoices, Own #Stories Award is offered annually to a children’s #picturebook manuscript by a #BIPOC or #LGBTQ #author with the intention of recognizing & amplifying new & #diverse #voices with unique perspectives. #wndb #pb #kidlit #writers

Poets & Writers Newsletter

MT @poetswritersinc Looking for a year of writing inspiration? You can get original writing prompts and book recommendations every week for free.

MT @CBCBook Jason Reynolds is meeting students virtually* to have meaningful discussions. Submit your school if you’re interested in hosting an event w/ @JasonReynolds83, the National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature. @SimonKIDS @librarycongress



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Kathy Sandler

Kathy Sandler

Sr Mgr, Content Applications, Penguin Random House * Innovation * Technology * Publishing * Opinions expressed are my own