There have been three main Kindle booklending clubs, with one of them handling both Kindle and Nook e-books. See earlier descriptions and links to the three sites. Sites described there are BookLending Club, Lendle, and LendInk.
Another site, ebookfling, received a full report in the Los Angeles times at one point, reported here.
UPDATE - Forum folks also recommend BooksForMyEreader which also does both Kindle and Nook.
BookLending.com said all through the day, Tuesday, on Facebook and on Twitter, that their access to Amazon's listings was "unaffected," it was "business as usual" and "we're not going anywhere."
But there was generalized anger at Amazon for withdrawing Lendle's access to an Amazon API (special application programming interface), and the news stories tended to treat the action as a likely blanket decision to do a full stop on all e-book-lending clubs WHILE the four lending clubs mentioned above were up and running and the largest one had to keep telling members through the day that all was fine with them.
There was something different with Lendle's situation. It's not because they were larger and therefore more threatening to the publishers or Amazon.
BookLending.com (formerly KindleLendingClub) now has approximately 18,000 members, and they say they're the largest lending site.
However, Amazon could have been clearer, if Lendle paraphrased their statements well and didn't leave out important portions of the letter to them. I think sometimes strange decisions are made at lower levels and the company pays for that later, but it was also quite odd that it was only Lendle that had the problem, of the sites that are most used.
The most balanced and thoughtful column I read yesterday was by Slate's Farhad Manjoo, who did contact two of the other lending sites and found them both running and surmised:
' This suggests that Amazon might have shut down Lendle for narrow technical reasons. So far, though, the company hasn't told Croft what those reasons are or what Lendle should do to restore access to the database. 'He also goes on to make many other good points, in general.
Here is Lendle's report-page re Amazon's actions and the explanation for the re-instatement last night. About Amazon's latest email to them, they report:
' Late today, we received an email from an Associates Account Specialist at Amazon informing us that their concern only relates to our Book Sync tool, which syncs a user’s Kindle books with their Lendle account.
Amazon informed us that if we disabled this feature, our access to the API, as well as our Amazon Associates account, would be reinstated. We appreciate Amazon’s willingness to modify the position stated in the original access revocation email and work with us to get Lendle back on line. We have complied with the request to disable the Book Sync tool (which was a very useful, but non-essential, feature of Lendle). '
That would be, then, the "narrow technical reason" that Slate's writer expected was the problem. It appears to be a tool that's "non-essential" for Lendle but the sync'g of a user's Kindle books with their Lendle account seems to have been meant by Lendle to make it possible to confirm that the member had actually bought the book from Amazon.
On the other hand, the use of that API seemed to encourage making known what was available for lending for each person even if the author had not thought to lend it, so that it encouraged random lending even more. Both publishers, already paranoid about e-books, and Amazon would have reason to be nervous about that.
Microsoft's lawsuit against Barnes & Noble (Nook)
"Microsoft sues Barnes & Noble over Nook reader"
Points in the ibnlive article:
' Microsoft Corp filed lawsuits for patent infringement on Monday against bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc over its Nook electronic book reader, widening the software company's legal assault on devices running on Google Inc's Android system...
. . .
In lawsuits filed in federal court in Seattle and with the International Trade Commission on Monday, Microsoft claimed the Nook line of e-readers infringe five Microsoft patents, concerning the way they display retrieved images, show the status of downloaded material on a small screen, edit electronic documents and render annotations.
The lawsuit also charged the makers of the devices, Foxconn International Holdings Ltd and Inventec Corp, with patent infringement.
"The Android platform infringes a number of Microsoft's patents, and companies manufacturing and shipping Android devices must respect our intellectual property rights," Horacio Gutierrez, deputy general counsel of Microsoft's intellectual property and licensing, said in a statement.
"We have tried for over a year to reach licensing agreements with Barnes & Noble, Foxconn and Inventec. Their refusals to take licenses leave us no choice but to bring legal action to defend our innovations."
Barnes and Noble said its policy is not to comment on litigation. Foxconn and Inventec could not immediately be reached for comment.' ...
It's surprising that B&N would 'refuse' to take licenses since they had put B&N up for sale due to less than favorable circumstances. Foxconn provides essentials to all the device-makers. How does that affect things?
UPDATE3 - Commenters to the blog have explanations for this.
Amazon took action to prevent possible problems with Microsoft last year and they're not known to 'give' where it's not required. Nieman Journalism Lab's Tim Carmody pointed out that "Microsoft and Amazon made a broad patent cross-licensing agreement for the Kindle and other technology, but it’s not known whether and under what conditions that agreement would permit an Amazon-branded multimedia tablet or prohibit it."
The Nieman piece by Carmody is more general and makes these points:
' ...Like Frommer, I think it’s unlikely that the mainstream Kindle will be radically altered. It is simply too successful for what it is...
Amazon plus Google may be the most dangerous competitor Apple could face. The open question would be whether such a “Googlezon” tablet would need to carry the Kindle brand, or whether (like “Wintel”), they could set the market standards for an ecosystem of third-party manufacturers. '
There's more at ibnlive.
Here's added detail from AP on the situation.
Apple filed a complaint against Amazon to prevent the use of "app store"
TechConnect's Cristian writes a short and sweet story explaining this (bracketed clarification mine):
' ...Apple is currently engaged in proceedings to register App Store as a trademark and says that Amazon's use of the words would confuse and mislead customers. Of course, iOS users [Apple operating system users] wouldn't really be 'confused' since Amazon's store would sell Android apps but even so, Apple doesn't like it and wants the court to throw the ban hammer at Amazon.
If Apple succeeds with its lawsuit then Amazon will have to figure out a new name for its store. '
ZDNet's Larry Dignan has a very detailed piece that should be read, explaining "Apple's stance: "Apple's App Store and a little trademark history"
Bloomberg gives detail on Apple's "Unlawful Use Claimed."
' Amazon has unlawfully used the App Store mark to solicit software developers throughout the United States,” Apple claimed.
Apple said in the court filing that it contacted Amazon three times to demand that it cease using the name and that Amazon hadn’t “provided a substantive response.”
“We’ve asked Amazon not to copy the App Store name because it will confuse and mislead customers,” said Kristin Huguet, a spokeswoman for Apple.
Apple applied to register App Store as a trademark in the U.S., and the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office approved the application, Apple said in the lawsuit.
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) opposes the registration and the matter will be the subject of proceedings before a trademark appeal board, according to the court filing. '
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Kindle 3's (UK: Kindle 3's), DX Graphite
Check often: Temporarily-free late-listed non-classics or recently published ones
Guide to finding Free Kindle books and Sources. Top 100 free bestsellers.
UK-Only: recently published non-classics, bestsellers, or £5 Max ones
Also, UK customers should see the UK store's Top 100 free bestsellers.
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