Editor & Publisher and Kirkus Reviews to close. Frankly I find this a little strange. Even spinning them off might have been better, though survival on their own would have been pretty unlikely without serious reorganization and a fundamental rethinking of the business models.
Canongate is profiled in the Wall Street Journal, that Jamie Byng has an eye for a book that can be packaged. It’d almost make ya jealous.
Frankly, I don’t buy this Apple Tablet nonsense much. Apple cannot single-handedly change the industry, though they may try. In any case when Steve Jobs announces this on a stage somewhere, I’m sure I’ll want it, but until then, I shall waste no energy waiting or wanting.
On the other hand, both Mike Shatzkin and Michael Hyatt have articles about new display systems for content that they claim will change the book world as we know it. I think both are right that change is coming but I have more sympathy with the Sports Illustrated demo video on Michael Hyatt’s post. After all that looks like a faster webpage with some extra features rather than something new. Webpages are the answer and so putting the web in every hand you can is the way forward for publishers and makes more sense than creating new, confusing and unnecessary formats. The trick is to make the customer pay for access to your content, not find a fancy way to display it.
Last week I had the distinct pleasure of attending the StartWithXML seminar that O’Reilly, Idea Logical & The Publishers Licensing Society ran in the British Library. The event itself was fantastically interesting as were the attendees.
Will Hawkins, who I met for the first time at the seminar, has a nice overview of the event on his blog here and I totally echo the wonder and awe that this section inspires:
Each book has all of the information about the title held in XML as well as the book in digital format so that, literally, at the click of a button, they can produce 48-page catalogues about their lists, feed their web site and make versions of each book in different formats. Anyone who has ever tried to put together a catalogue in a conventional way will know that it can take weeks and weeks to do this.
Want to know of whom he speaks? It should be obvious, but just in case, it’s Snowbooks.
Aside from that, I was struck very heavily by just how much further down the path of digitisation, chunking and generally the new reality STM and Academic publishers are. One eye opener was the wonderfully succinct and yet powerful presentation (all of the presentations are on slideshare here) by Mark Majurey from Taylor & Francis. Have a read below, but the effort is somewhat lost, because you don’t get to hear Mark saying that T&F were selling chunked content online as early as 2001!!! It just didn’t take off hugely.
When you hear that news, you realise how far trade publishers have to come before they are even at the races with some of these things.
An eye-opening day,
Interesting effort here by RTÉ who seem to be getting the hang of cross media productions following the success of their Judging Dev and Our War enterprises:
Look Of The Irish
The Book Oven opens for business finally and impressively with the first in a new set of tools to make publishing easier and funn-er! Read the post about it here and sign up for their Bite Sized Edits program here.
Will Somebody Please Hire This Woman: this is very slick. Debbie Stier gives credit where it’s due and calls for book publishers to hire more people like Marian Schembari
That’s it for today, though I have many more links to share once I get some time to read through and share!