Cheap US books could write off British spellings and leave readers angry if copyright rules change – Daily Mail

By Paul Revoir Media Editor For The Daily Mail
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Britain could be flooded with books using US spellings and words if ministers push ahead with changes to copyright rules, say publishers.
Book rights are currently sold in a way that allows them to sell titles at different prices in different territories.
This supports the British book industry and authors.
But the Government is looking at an ‘international exhaustion regime’ which could open the way for internet retailers to flood the market with cheap imported editions.
Stephen Lotinga, chief executive of the Publishers Association, said: ‘We will see an influx of cookies, sweaters and sidewalks instead of biscuits, jumpers and pavements – as well as the missing u’s and z’s instead of s’s that drive Brits bonkers
The Publishers Association fears this would lead to the Americanisation of books in Britain.
‘We will see an influx of cookies, sweaters and sidewalks instead of biscuits, jumpers and pavements – as well as the missing u’s and z’s instead of s’s that drive Brits bonkers,’ said Stephen Lotinga, chief executive of the Publishers Association.
A survey by the association showed that 63 per cent of Britons agreed it would annoy them if US spellings were used in a book set in Britain.
The author of Any Human Heart, William Boyd (pictured), said it was ‘utterly disgraceful’ that the Government might ‘seek to undermine’ the ‘conventions that guard copyright’
Only 25 per cent agreed that it was more important to get a cheap book rather than pay a bit more to support the UK book industry.
It also found 69 per cent agreed it was important for the Government to support the industry and authors.
Hilary Mantel and William Boyd are among authors who have warned that the book industry and the livelihoods of writers are at risk if the rules are changed.
Dame Hilary Mantel (pictured) pointed to the importance of copyright when ‘most writers live and earn precariously’ 
The Government is expected to announce the outcome of its consultation on the matter in the next few weeks.
Book rights are currently sold in a way that allows publishers to sell titles at different prices in different territories.
The Publishers Association survey carried out by Savanta ComRes also found that 61 per cent of Brits felt ‘proud’ when a British book does well around the world.
It also found that 69 per cent agreed it was important for the UK Government to support the book industry and authors.
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