Scribd introduces bite-sized nonfiction previews called Snapshots

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Subscription e-book and audiobook service Scribd is unveiling a new content type that it calls a Snapshot — a distillation of a nonfiction book’s key points, which can be read or listened to in 15 minutes or less.

In fact, although it’s only announcing Snapshots today, Scribd says it’s already created around 500 of them, for example, this preview of  Jaron Lanier’s audiobook “Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now” and this Snapshot of Mark Manson’s “The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck.”

CEO Trip Adler said a Snapshot is meant to capture “the key insights, the key themes, the tone, the structure of the book.”

As Scribd creates more Snapshots, subscribers will see them show up alongside the books themselves, in both text and audio formats.

And while it’s easy to think of this as a CliffsNotes version that allows you to skip the book itself, Adler said it’s actually designed to do the opposite, namely to help readers “make a better decision” about whether to read the whole thing. In other words, you should get a clear sense of what an author is trying to say, but you’ll have to turn to the book itself

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