Jun 23 2011 8:32am

Pottermore Revealed

Minutes ago, J.K. Rowling finally announced her plans behind Pottermore, the mysterious website that appeared a week hence with only a “Coming Soon” sign to warns readers and fans.

It seems that Rowling is intent on pursuing the life of the books within the Harry Potter community. Starting in October, fans will be able to join Pottermore and experience the series in a whole new way. According to the The Telegraph, this site will be part social networking forum and part computer game, where a whole new generation of readers will be able to follow Harry’s footsteps online, beginning with their own sorting by the famous rhyming hat.

New information on the universe that never made it into the books will be available on the Pottermore site; part of the reason for bringing this project to the public was to give Rowling a place to leave addition information about her characters and the wizarding world for the reading community to discover. It is unclear how this information will be unlocked, but it is part of the interactive experience Pottermore will create. While fans still might be treated to a Harry Potter encyclopedia, now there is a new way to learn more about the world they know and love.

In addition, Pottermore will also offer the Harry Potter books in ebook format, bringing Harry further into the digital world. You can register for a special challenge—one million lucky fans who beat it will receive the opportunity to try the site out as early as July 31st (Harry and Rowling’s birthday).

So what do you think? Are you eager to explore this unique digital reading experience? Are you disappointed that it wasn’t something else? Share your thoughts and feelings below!

Bruce Meyer
1. dominsions
Great idea! An interactive Potter world would be fantastic. There's a whole history behind each one of those characters to be discovered.
2. 13xforever
So, she's ok with the social networks and publishing fan fiction on the web, but it's no-no for HP ebooks? Interesting position...
David Stumme
3. grenadier
From the article:

In addition, Pottermore will also offer the Harry Potter books in ebook format, bringing Harry further into the digital world.

Sounds like she's over the ebook ban to me. It does pay to read the article all the way through sometimes.
William Frank
4. scifantasy
Annoyingly, though, it seems that the ebooks will only be available at the Pottermore site. Oy.
Francesco Paonessa
5. ErrantKnave
Annoyingly? It's brilliant, actually. She (or whoever's in charge) sets the price, and doesn't have to pay a cent to Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble, and the rest. Pretty much any author would love to be in her position. I'm sure the ebooks will still be reasonably priced.
Dirk Walls
6. dirk
Partnered with Sony for this, so you are pretty much sending all your personal info directly to some group of hackers when you sign up for this new site. :P
7. 13xforever
@grenadier: if my understanding is correct, it's not an ebook. It's a way to read them online. Yes, it's a step forward, but I'll only be satisfied when I'll see them in major ebook stores in various formats.
8. The Chaos Factory
first to sign up gets the username harrypotter1
Doc Tobin
9. thegooddoctor
seems pretty straightforward to me. the announcement says that it will include ebooks.
James Whitehead
10. KatoCrossesTheCourtyard
Sounds fun to me.

My kids, even my 15 year old daughter, will love to do this.

11. lolly
Sorry to be a wet blanket, but this is, well, rather disappointing. A social networking site? When are we going to get a new book?
12. wandering-dreamer
Ooooo, I liked playing the video games based on the books but I always wanted something a bit more like a MMORPG, I'm pumped!
Rich Bennett
13. Neuralnet
my feeling is sort of... meh. Basically an ebook format and maybe some sort of forum/encyclopedia. At this point, I feel like I have read the HP books plenty of times and dont need an ebook and unless she invents new details about her universe... we have seen or heard about it all before on other sites.
14. thorn
@13xforever, there's another article 'out there' in which Rowling states that she doesn't want the e-books to be limited to a single format, and that they're working with Overdrive to make the books available for all devices, including the Kindle. I can't even imagine why Rowling would make the books readable online only. That technology has existed since the 60's and never caught on for long form reading - ever. And still hasn't. No way would Rowling go for the tech hardly anyone is using.

What I don't care for, though, is that it seems sharing across a single account might not be possible. So for Potter, I'll have to swap Kindles with my husband or something? Not that he'll want to read them, but you get what I mean.

Most ebook systems permit multiple members of the same family to have simultaneous access, cloud-style -- sort of like if the print set were sitting in the open on a bookshelf in the house. So Rowling wants each kid in the same family to have his or her own paid copy? This remains to be seen.
15. hammerlock
If they allow fan fic, I give it 2 weeks before the site is overrun by Snape/Harry.
16. CarolynC
This is a very interesting idea, online game/encylopaedia and finally getting HP ebooks! But I have to admit... I was wishing it was another book!
17. karina123
First off, I was definitely disappointed. I've also read the books over enough to have my own internal hp encyc. I don't see how we're supposed to fawn over her because she brought out yet another stupid addition to her dictionary of hp things. What I loved about her work was the plot for god sakes.. the character development, and the action. THIs just feels too much like milking the cow that isn't lactating anymore instead of sending the cow to breed again. GIve us some new books, with new characters and new experiences of their own, instead of just adding some notes onto a webpage and creating a stupid online clue-puzzle thingie . Also to whomever says ebooks are new tech not likely to catch on... CBC RADIO NEWS TODAY CONFIRMED THAT MORE PEOPLE ARE BROWSING THE WEB ON THEIR PHONES THAN ON COMPUTERS, AND THAT EBOOK SALES HAVE NOW OVERSHOT TRADITIONAL BOOK SALES.
Considering the lower cost of ebooks to books, it means both more books are being read period... and that people are reveling in the availability and portability of ebooks over paperbound ones. Shove that in your pipe and smoke it eh?
18. laurene
I enjoy the idea of additional information being given, even if it's just random tidbits on the universe, and don't necessarily link directly to Potter and friends; however, I do agree with the other comments in that it feels a bit redundant. I mean, follow Harry's footsteps? Isn't that what people have been as early as 1997/1998? We've done so through the books, and now we're continuing through the movies. Frankly, I don't really want to follow his footsteps anymore, or have too much to do with Hogwarts, and instead would like her to expand upon the universe, but that's just me.
19. jimmeh
When you say "the mysterious website that appeared a week hence" did you really mean "the mysterious website that appeared a week ago"? Enquiring minds want to know

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