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PreviewPort Launches eBookShop Featuring Microsoft Reader Technology Powered by OverDrive; e-Books by Leading PreviewPort Authors Featured

PreviewPort Launches eBookShop Featuring Microsoft Reader Technology Powered by OverDrive; e-Books by Leading PreviewPort Authors FeaturedBusiness Editors, High Tech Writers

CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 18, 2000

PreviewPort.com today announced the grand opening of its e-BookShop, featuring titles from authors Susan Cheever, James Salter, Carole Maso, and Ridley Pearson that were published as PreviewPort Editions by the company's electronic publishing division. The new PreviewPort.com e-BookShop utilizes MIDAS Technology(R) from OverDrive, an authorized provider of Microsoft eBooks digital rights management technology. Cheever, Salter, Maso, and Pearson all also maintain author websites at www.previewport.com.

"We're pleased to be among the pioneers in bringing this emerging technology to readers," said PreviewPort founder and CEO Susan Bergman. "Connecting readers and writers is our mission, and offering our readers immediate access to great literature in a variety of media is part of building that strong connection."

PreviewPort's e-BookShop makes its titles available through Microsoft Reader, an e-book reading application designed for Windows-based computers. With ClearType display technology, Microsoft Reader delivers an on-screen reading experience that offers the convenience and quality of paper with the added advantages of the digital realm. A visitor to the e-BookShop can immediately download Microsoft Reader at no charge (connect-time charges may apply).

"Microsoft is excited to be working with PreviewPort in bringing high-quality content to consumers in e-book form," said Steve Stone, general manager of the e-book group at Microsoft Corp. "We're proud that PreviewPort has chosen Microsoft Reader technology to launch its e-book business."

"Readers and authors now have a unique e-book literary community," stated OverDrive president Steve Potash. "PreviewPort's e-BookShop provides readers the benefit of Microsoft's newest e-book technologies while assuring authors and publishers that their works enjoy the copyright protection they require," Potash added.

In addition to PreviewPort's own line of PreviewPort Editions, the new e-BookShop will offer titles from many publishers, including Time-Warner, St. Martin's, and Farrar, Straus & Giroux, in a full range of categories including fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and spiritual classics. "We believe that to realize the full potential of e-books, readers must be able to have access to a broad range of important titles by contemporary writers," Bergman said. "And we're building this list by offering writers the most compelling e-publishing solution in the market, with a 50 percent net royalty and worldwide exposure for their works."

For readers, Bergman added, "What distinguishes PreviewPort from other sites is the richness of the book-buying experience. Finding a great book can include an encounter with your favorite author, much like a book-signing would." Visiting an author website at PreviewPort, readers may find information on an author's life and career, books and shorter works (such as poems, essays, and stories -- some of which appear on the site), and upcoming readings and appearances, and can leave a message or comment in the author's Guest Book. They can then purchase the authors' books, in available formats, from PreviewPort's on-site e-BookShop.

PreviewPort hosts websites for nearly 200 of the world's leading authors and will soon launch its innovative International Author Index, which provides qualified published authors with free web pages they can set up themselves by entering their photo, bio, and current works information directly at the PreviewPort.com site. The International Author Index will provide the most accurate and up-to-date information available on thousands of authors to researchers, students, book-buyers, and publishing professionals worldwide.

About PreviewPort

PreviewPort is an internet-based company that provides author information, publishes electronic books, and hosts a national literary calendar and online events. The company is committed to connecting readers and writers worldwide.

About OverDrive, Inc.

OverDrive, Inc., (www.overdrive.com) a leading B2B eBook technology vendor, is located in Cleveland, Ohio and provides a full suite of content conversion, e-commerce and Digital Rights Management (DRM) solutions for the publishing community. A specialist in XML services, OverDrive is one of the authors of the Open eBook Specification (OeB) and has successfully developed and delivered thousands of commercial titles for leading trade, reference, and education publishers.