Technology • Innovation • Publishing — Issue #224

Kathy Sandler
10 min readDec 19, 2022

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Important Items

Mothers and Babies Are More Likely to Die in States With Harsh Abortion
A new report from the Commonwealth Fund finds that abortion-restrictive states have worse maternal and infant health outcomes.

Texas Just Tried To Get A List Of All Trans People. Other States Consider Registries.
AG Paxton in Texas attempted to get a list of all transgender people through the use of DMV gender marker changes. Ohio, Florida, and Virginia have also attempted to document trans people.

Childhood’s Greatest Danger: The Data on Kids and Gun
Gun violence recently surpassed car accidents as the leading cause of death for American children. No group of kids has been spared, but some have fared far worse.

Utah Republican Senator Mike Lee Introduces Bill to Outlaw All Porn Nationwide
Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) this week introduced the Interstate Obscenity Definition Act, a bill that nominally aims to “establish a national definition of obscenity” but which would, in effect, outlaw all online sexual content nationwide.

10 Quick Wins to Make Your Organization More Disability Inclusive
Small-scale and low-cost activities can make a huge difference in making your organization more disability inclusive.

Brands, You Might Be Putting Up Your Own Barriers to Diverse Creators

For diverse creators, the creator economy can mirror some of the same inequities we see across industries and in the broader global economy: Pay inequity, lack of equal representation and processes that don’t consider the unique barriers and needs of different lived experiences.

Lead and Cadmium Could Be in Your Dark

Consumer Reports tested 28 dark chocolate bars and found cadmium and lead in all of them.


ChatGPT and the Imagenet moment

HT @neilperkin @benedictevans on the differences between ML and generative ML. Supervised learning in ML, he says, gives the machine the data and the answers and it calculates the rules but this comes with the limitation that the system has no structural understanding of the question. Generative systems however run this in reverse so that once you’ve identified a pattern, you can make something new that seems to fit that pattern, but this requires you to think about the context of the question you are asking. #AI

AI throws a lifeline to local publishers

MT @NiemanLab Instantly generating summaries of public meetings and documents, creating tweets and social posts from news stories, drafting scripts for news broadcasts, even suggesting different headline variations. #predix2023 #AI

The Dawn of Artificial Imagination

RT @TheAtlantic “The reason we built this tool is to really democratize image generation for a bunch of people who wouldn’t necessarily classify themselves as artists,” Mark Chen, the lead researcher on DALL-E 2, told @andersen in a recent interview. #AI


OpenAI’s attempts to watermark AI text hit limits

OpenAI is working on a way to watermark text, according to a guest researcher working at the lab. But it’s limited in key ways. #AI

TIKTok ban bill introduced by US lawmakers

A trio of US lawmakers has introduced new legislation that aims to ban TikTok from operating in the United States. #TikTok

Senate Passes Bill Banning TikTok From Government

Social-media app has come under scrutiny over China-based parent ByteDance. #TikTok

TikTok now supports horizontal, YouTube style, full-screen videos on the
The short-form, vertical video app is now including a full screen, horizontal video viewing option.

Apple Preparing to Allow Users to Install Third-Party App Stores, Sideload in Europe

HT @markgurman Apple is preparing to allow alternative app stores and side-loading on iOS — along with a slew of other changes to make the iPhone more open — in response to new European Union requirements arriving in 2024. #Apple

Microsoft buys near 4% stake in London Stock Exchange Group as part of 10-year cloud deal
U.S. tech giant Microsoft on Monday announced a 10-year partnership with the London Stock Exchange and took a near 4% stake in the U.K. bourse operator.

Twitter shuts down Revue, its newsletter platform

Revue, the newsletter platform acquired by Twitter in January 2021, is shutting down. I’m looking for a new platform now.

Amazon Agrees to Change Some Business Practices in EU Settlement

The e-commerce giant avoided a fine, but will make a variety of changes regulators believe will help independent merchants who had raised alarms about Amazon’s tactics. #Amazon

On Twitch, You Can Never Log

The demands of daily livestreaming are driving creators to rethink the benefits of Twitch fame. #CreatorBurnout


Amazon to End Print Textbook Rentals, Overhaul Magazine and Newspaper Subscriptions

Amazon is discontinuing its print textbook rental program, and will phase out print and digital magazine and newspaper subscriptions as well, though some magazines and newspapers will remain available through Kindle Unlimited. #Amazon

How a Great Audiobook Narrator Finds Her
Robin Miles was looking for stage and screen roles when she began reading books for the blind. She’s become one of the country’s most celebrated narrators.

USA Today Bestseller List “On Hiatus” After Longtime Editor Is Laid Off

As part of significant layoffs at USA Today and Gannett, approximately 200 newsroom employees were let go at the beginning of December, including longtime editor of the USA Today Best-Selling Books list Mary Cadden. She produced the list since 2007.

Bookforum, Artforum’s literary sister magazine, ceases publication

RT @TheArtNewspaper Bookforum, the sister magazine of art-world glossy Artforum that was recently acquired by Penske Media, will cease publication

Can U.S. Printers Make a Comeback?

HT @brigidblack The CEO of Worzalla says that with Chinese dominance of the industry threatened by frequent lockdowns and high shipping costs, now is the time for American printers to expand. #printing

Literary Luminaries Debate Diversity, Publishing’s Moral Obligations at PEN Town

In a Pen America town hall titled Do Publisher’s Have a Moral Obligation to Diversify American Literature? authors Min Jin Lee, Chris Beha, Roxane Gay and publishing veteran Erroll McDonald all weighed in. #BookPublishing #Diversity

BookTrust UK Report: Diversity in Children’s Books
Taking time to honor progress — and point to the need for more — the UK’s BookTrust reflects on diversity in children’s books.

Adobe’s Pantone Colors Fade to Black: Users Turn Rubine Over Removal of Libraries from Creative Cloud

Learn everything you need to know about what’s happening with #Pantone colors in #Adobe software

Campaigners call on literary festivals to find ways to retain digital access

RT @thebookseller Groups including @InklusionGuide, @CRIPticArts and #KeepFestivalsHybrid are calling on literary festivals to find ways to retain digital access provisions after some indicated they would need to cut back on hybrid options because of the “prohibitive” cost.

Legally bookish: Reese Witherspoon and the boom in celebrity book clubs

The star has deposed Oprah Winfrey as queen of the online literary discussion groups — and plenty more A-listers are getting in on the act. #BookClubs #BookPublishing

How Publishers Make Old Books New
Pluck any classic novel from a bookstore shelf and it will most likely feature an introduction by a contemporary writer. Especially inspired pairing of authors can imbue an old text with new relevance, highlight its enduring influence, or even become a new selling point for a backlist title.

A Fifth of American Adults Struggle to Read. Why Are We Failing to Teach Them?

HT @publishingtrend The nation’s approach to adult education has so far neglected to connect the millions of people struggling to read with the programs set up to help them. #literacy

PW’s 2022 People of the Year: The

We recognize the librarians, booksellers, authors, publishers, and allies standing tall in the face of unprecedented attacks on the freedom to read. #BookBans

A Fast-Growing Network of Conservative Groups Is Fueling a Surge in Book Bans

Traditionally, debates over what books are appropriate for school libraries have taken place between a concerned parent and a librarian or administrator, and resulted in a single title or a few books being re-evaluated, and either removed or returned to shelves. But recently, the issue has been supercharged by a rapidly growing and increasingly influential constellation of conservative groups. The organizations frequently describe themselves as defending parental rights. Some are new and others are longstanding, but with a recent focus on books. Some work at the district and state level, others have national reach. And over the past two years or so, they have grown vastly more organized, interconnected, well funded — and effective. #BookBans

After contentious elections, conservative Florida school boards boot out

MT @kathrynvarn Newly conservative Florida school boards are abruptly dismissing their superintendents, the first big moves after the most contentious school board election cycle that many in education circles had ever seen. #BookBans

A resolution at public library board mtg tonight in LA called for pulling ALL graphic novels from stacks, placing them behind the circulation desk, where they could be requested but not perused. Increasingly seems some ppl want the whole library behind the circulation desk

RT @jonfreadom #BookBans

Report: US Literary Nonprofits Paid Writers $9.9 Million in
‘Vulnerable organizations and publishers unprepared to withstand another crisis’ are described in a new US nonprofit-sector study.

The most-read books of 2022, according to
In 2022, BookTok owned the book world. And here’s what they were selling, from ​​It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover to The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid.

NPR staff recommend the fiction books we love
NPR staff recommend four novels from our Books We Love list: “A Merry Little Meet Cute,” “The Complicated Calculus (and Cows) of Carl Paulsen,” “The Devil Takes You Home,” and “Lapvona.”

100 Best Teen & Young Adult Books of the Year

#BestBooks2022 #YA

The best critical nonfiction/biographical crime books of the

The Best Black Non Fiction of 2022
2022 was a great year for Black books. These are some of our favorites

The Best Book Covers of

In a year brimming with beautiful jacket art, these books stood out. #BestCovers

The 103 Best Book Covers of 2022

For what is now the seventh time in a row, I am pleased to present the best book covers of the year — as chosen by some of the industry’s best book cover designers. #BestCovers

The Arena Group Acquiring Digital Assets of Men’s Journal and Adventure Network From a360 Media

RT @TheStreet The Arena Group has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire the digital assets of Men’s Journal, Men’s Fitness, Surfer, Powder, Bike, SKATEboarding, Snowboarder and NewSchoolers from accelerate360

Resources & Opportunities

In 2022, @WMG_NYC:

  • Distributed $30K to 11 scholars
  • Increased Scholarship Partnerships to 8
  • Announced new Presidents Emeritae Award.

Please consider a yr-end donation to Women’s Media Group Educational Foundation so we can continue to offer this support!

Charitybuzz: Meet Author Deb Caletti & Have a Character Named After You in Her Next

Are you looking for a unique gift for the avid reader in your life? Bid on this @WMG_NYC @charitybuzz auction item to meet author Deb Caletti via zoom & have a character named after you in her next novel

Let’s Get 1 Million Books to Children in Need this Holiday


Contact the NYC Mayor’s Office to Support Libraries

MT @jeannakadlec time to flood @NYCMayor @ericadamsfornyc offices with our support for libraries — one of the absolute treasures of our city message form here:… phone here: 212–788–3000.

NYC mayor Eric Adams is demanding city libraries to cut their budgets by $13.6 million by the end of fiscal year 2023, and another $20.5 million over the next 3 fiscal years. This will be devastating for the services and operations of the library system.

MT @bronxisreading Interested in being a vendor at the 6th annual Bronx Book Festival in-person on Saturday, June 10, 2023? Submit for consideration by Friday, January 6, 2023.

White House to restart free Covid home test
The popular mail-order program for the home kits will start as part of a broader winter preparedness plan.



Kathy Sandler

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