First Amazon, Google, now publishers …

… are making it possible to search inside the content of books.

Here’s the story from AP:

NEW YORK (AP) … Random House Inc. has made online excerpts available from books by Toni Morrison, Calvin Trillin and thousands of others as publishers continue their push to sell more books through the Internet.

The Random House search and browser program, Insight, was officially launched Tuesday.

“We believe Insight will be an invaluable marketing tool for our publishers, our authors, and particularly our booksellers, as book content sampling frequently is followed by consumer purchase,” Andrew Weber, Random House’s senior vice president for perations and technology, said in a statement.

Earlier this week, HarperCollins announced its own Browse Inside “widget” program, with excerpts available from books by Michael Crichton, Sidney Poitier and many others. According to HarperCollins, the new program enables “fans and authors to embed sample pages of their favorite books directly onto social networking sites and blogs.”

“The Browse Inside widget is the most recent marketing tool we have developed using the capabilities of our digital warehouse to market our titles to the MySpace generation online,” HarperCollins Group President Brian Murray said in a statement.

“We are extending our reach beyond the HarperCollins site to where many potential book buyers visit … on social communities, blogs or author sites.”


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