Great piece by Joe Esposito over at the Scholarly Kitchen about the end of the revolution. I’m not sure I totally agree with the ultimate sense of something being over. I personally think there’s a great deal more to the current wave of disruption than we are allowing for right now (indeed I highlighted that the other day). What’s more I worry as I’ve said before, than many publishers think they have the transition down when they simply don’t, but I do agree that the basic precepts of the revolution ‘so far’ have become baked in to the planning and thinking of most publishers!
In an entertaining but mostly uninformative presentation, the self-described futurist commented that if you can change the way people think about the future, you can change the future. This is not itself a radical idea. Outside the sanctum of a high technology conference, this is what is known as marketing; someone with a darker disposition might call it Orwellian. Activists for an ongoing publishing revolution as distinct from those who work for consolidation put people on the defensive rather than engage them with new projects, new plans. It’s time to send our revolutionaries home and work to build new practices on a practical foundation.
via The Digital Publishing Revolution Is Over | The Scholarly Kitchen.
Excellent post by Joe Esposito over at Scholarly Kitchen today on Vestron’s Law. Oddly enough, it touched on ideas and principles I mention in a blog post over on EoinPurcell.com today. Happy timing because Joe’s post gives a much better theoretical foundation to what I am saying than I could have:
Vestron’s Law also accounts for many structural changes in the publishing industry. During the 1980s, for example, trade book publishers began to talk of “vertical integration,” by which they meant that a hardcover house, which originated titles, should be aligned with a mass market paperback house, which in those days was the key source of publishing revenue; paperback houses licensed rights from hardcover publishers. Thus Random House bought Fawcett hardcover house purchasing a paperback company and New American Library, where I worked at the time, acquired Dutton paperback publisher acquires a hardcover house. The culmination of this trend came about when Bantam, the leading paperback house, acquired Random House, the leading trade publisher.
via Vestron’s Law: The Propensity for Rights to Revert to the Original Publisher « The Scholarly Kitchen.
Empires, by definition, begin their decline at their peak. Today Amazon bestrides the publishing world like Caesar, and it may seem far-fetched to think of this company slipping from its dominant position. There is some doubt, however, that Amazon can continue to augment its control over so many facets of the industry. Although there may be more growth ahead, the environment Amazon operates in is evolving and rivals may force their way through cracks in the fortress.
Joe Esposito has a great essay over on Publishing Frontier. You should go read it!