Feedbooks responds to yesterday’s Blio launch

Calvin Reid over at Publisher’s Weekly posted a follow up article this morning where he contact KNFB (developer of Blio) and asked them to explain some of the details of yesterday’s debacle. One comment made by Peter Chapman, the KNFB spokesman, caught my eye. He said that Feedbooks knew it was being included in Blio months before the launch.

I checked with Hadrien Gardeur, founder and CEO of Feedbooks. According to Hadrien, they were not asked, they were _told_ by Mike Angelo that Feedbooks would be included. When Hadrien protested, he was ignored. I like the reasons he gave for objecting, so I copied his email to the end of this post.

This is actually worse, if you ask me. It’s one thing if you forget to ask, but asking and ignoring the “no”, well, in terms of business ethics I think it falls just short of piracy.

Okay, that was melodramatic, but what they did was still pretty bad. What do you think?

The email:

More precisely:
  • I’ve known for a while that KNFB were using our OPDS feeds for dedicated systems designed for print-disabled people (http://www.knfbreader.com/products-kreader-mobile.php). Which I’m glad they’re doing.
  • Two months ago, Mike Angelo sent me an e-mail asking if we could add Blio to our premium partners on our ecosystem page http://web.archive.org/web/20120816012316/http://www.feedbooks.com:80/help/ecosystem) because Feedbooks would be part of Blio. I replied that I wasn’t aware that Blio planned on including Feedbooks and that I was against it for several reasons (see below). He never replied.
At Feedbooks we allow reading systems to preload our catalog if it provides the following features:
  1. supports EPUB (not the case with Blio, they need to do a conversion)
  2. fully supports OPDS (once again, not the case with Blio, they don’t offer our full catalog, they only aggregate a few of our feeds and use our search feature)
  3. enable users to add OPDS catalogs (not the case with Blio)
  4. if the reading system also includes commercial content, we require that the reading system should also support payment in OPDS and ACS4 support in order to sell content
If a reading system doesn’t support all four (or the first three if it’s oriented towards free books like FBReader for example), they can still provide OPDS support and let users add manually our catalog.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Jane29 September, 2010

    Oh Blio. What an embarrassment.

  2. Mike Cane29 September, 2010

    *snort* Blio the bully. No one wants to play with you now!

  3. […] Digital Reader – Feedbooks responds to yesterday’s Blio launch Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)O Blio, Blio, wherefore art thou Blio?BBC Posts […]

  4. igorsk29 September, 2010

    So did he disable the feed to them yet? Not sure if it’s possible but would’ve been a nice move IMO.

  5. Blio Launches With Glitches - eBookNewser29 September, 2010

    […] signing a deal with Feedbooks.com, but just hadn’t given Feedbooks the exact launch date.  But The Digital Reader followed up and found out that Gardeur did not know. From the Digital Reader blog: “…they were […]

  6. BS25 January, 2011

    when did feedbooks get disabled in blio reader, you would think feedbooks would be ok with users downloading their free books, no matter what program is helping the users do so, this is just politics by feedbooks makers or haters
    now you can just only download google books
    what is feedbooks hiding and should they be shutdown for this behavor , some say yes they should be shutdown, because their are plenty of other sources that don’t steal from http://www.gutenberg.org ebooks and rename and call them their own ebooks etc.. at least I think its feedbooks that is using gutenberg sources, not very cool unless I confesting feedbooks with manybooks or epubbooks sources, its hard to say which is best besides google books of course


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Scroll to top