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Great news! BookGlutton has been named a Webby Award Honoree in the Community Category. They tell us out of a whopping 10,000 entries submitted to the 14th Annual Webby Awards, less than 15% are awarded the status of Official Honoree. Entries came from all 50 states and over 60 countries worldwide. It’s a big deal, and we’re humbled by it. Moreover, there are only two book sites listed this year – our partner Goodreads is the only other one we found. Represent!

This isn’t the first time BG has gotten a little Webby Love. In 2008 we were a bona fide finalist in the same Category (Community), against some of the heavyweights that are up there again: Flickr and COLOURlovers. We wrote about it here and here.

What else can we say, except THANK YOU! to our USERS and the folks at the WEBBYS.

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Read, chat and annotate on your laptop, then take the book with you via your phone. Read the press release: http://bookglutton.com/PR/bookglutton_goes_mobile_press_release_1202010.pdf

Here’s what we said in the January Newsletter:
BookGlutton has launched a mobile reading experience! Fire up your iPhone or Android phone, open a browser and head to http://www.BookGlutton.com to see the new, streamlined version. Access your books on the go and pick up where you left off on other devices!

The mobile site keeps you up to date: browse the catalog, see what others are reading, or jump into a random book.

BookGlutton's Mobile Reading Experience w/ Toolbar

READING ON THE GO On BookGlutton Mobile the maximum space has been cleared for text. Tap the right or left side of the screen to move through the book, tap the center to slide your menu up. Change font size, peruse the Table of Contents, and see where you are in the book.

READING ACROSS DEVICES Log in and pick up where you left off on your laptop for a seamless reading experience across all your devices. Instead of requiring you to download an app, BookGlutton has taken reading into the cloud.

See what books have just been opened via BookGlutton.com

COMMUNITY & COLLECTIONS Access your wall to stay on top of what people want to tell you – we’ve streamlined profile pages so just your wall postings show. You can also get to your friend list to see what books people have been reading

We’ve put together two panels for SXSW, but it’s up to you to vote!

Our proposals are:

The Future of Reading: Books on the Web

A new group of entrepreneurs is bringing reading back to the masses by creating ways to read and discuss books using the web. Displaying long-format texts online presents unique challenges. What does the interface look like, and how should it work? How do web 2.0 communities figure into this experience? Is reading helped or hindered by this transformation?

Books and the Twenty-First Century – The New Realm of Reading
Ten years ago reading meant paper. Today there are a number of new ways to read and talk about books. IPhones, web apps and online communities have significantly changed how we interact with books. They look different, they act differently, and now we communicate about them via technology. Here’s a rundown of what has changed and what’s to come.

HEADER SCREENSHOT

This week we pushed a new header and footer – a significant change in the Web World and one that makes a lot of sense for BookGlutton. We simplified the heck out of it. Check it out:

  • It only shows public links: those reachable by visitors who haven’t logged in.
  • There’s an infamous Surprise Me link. This bad boy takes you into a random book at any moment.
  • There’s a Notes page that shows a list of the most recent public comments.

AVATAR MENU SCREENSHOT

We’ve also added your own personal submenu. It’ll show up in the header once you log in. It’s superfast. As my brother so eloquently put it: You’ve got all your user settings grouped with your avatar. Cool. Your personal submenu gets you to all the books you’ve opened, uploaded and shared, among other personal content pages.

FOOTER SCREENSHOT

Third, we’ve added what’s called a “deep footer” to the site. This footer is tall so it allows us to better silo company-specific information, APIs, etc. We pull in one of our Twitter feeds, bookgluttonNEWS, so you can get the skinny on updates, mad props and bacon-infusion advice from our interns. You can see it on our homepage.

We just sent out the July newsletter – if it wasn’t whisked directly into your Inbox you can check it out here. This month we’re talking about our new partnership with Random House and the early BookGlutton release of Sacred Hearts (complete with original author comments). We also announce Ed Lamoureux’s new book Free for a Fee, talk about managing your Groups, and go over how to partner up or buy an ad.

Read the July Newsletter.

Laura Sydell wrote an excellent piece about BookGlutton for All Things Considered last week. Called Chat While Reading: The Future of Books? it outlines our service and interviews professors who have used it in a classroom setting. It made our server hiccup – we were terribly excited!

You can read it, or, as we recommend, listen to it here.

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We’re excited to announce a new partnership with Random House that brings authors and readers together. NYT bestselling author Sarah Dunant has a new book coming out mid-July, but you can read the first four chapters of it NOW, on BookGlutton. Even better than this early preview, you can read comments Dunant attached to the book about her characters, research and her own experiences. THAT’s something new, eh?

There’s a lot you can do with Sacred Hearts on BookGlutton beyond reading it: reply to Sarah’s comments, attach your own comments, visit Dunant’s profile page, basically interact with her THROUGH her book, weeks before it comes out in stores. Feel free to ask questions throughout the book for Dunant to answer, as she has a BookGlutton account.

There’s even a special note to BookGlutton readers included in the preview. Check it out!