Andrew Savikas of O’Reilly Media and I definitely agree on some things, the principal one being that it is going to get harder and harder for people to get paid for content. And it is going to become more and more necessary for a publisher to be branded as “of value to the community” to […]
We have turned our attention to a problem we believe will occupy just about all publishers in the years to come, the opportunities and challenges presented by an XML workflow that starts with the author, or even before there is an author.
Why should you care? Because the world we live in is changing, and XML is the key to mastering the change
The basic premise under which we’re operating here, I’ll summarize for those of you have never heard or read my work before, is that horizontal, format-specific media entities are oh, so 20th century, and won’t work very deep into the 21st. The reason for that is the web, which almost forces vertical organization. Horizontal presentations across subject matter — like CBS, Random House, or The New York Times — were the products of a capital-intensive, limited-distribution universe
I am not predicting that everybody will read on screens. You probably know that I’m a fan of the Kindle and perhaps you know that I’ve been an avid ebook reader on a Palm for almost 10 years. But I’ve learned that other people’s attachment to paper is greater than mine. And anyway, it would be a good thing for general trade publishers if there were more screen takeup; it would mean keeping the readers for their content and not necessarily any loss in margin
…even though we’ve seen our business get tougher in many ways, some of the predictions made at the turn of the century for big changes in this decade, such as disruptive ebook takeup, just haven’t come true. The book business has, arguably, been less affected than any of the other major media by digital change. Or maybe I shouldn’t say “arguably.” Maybe I should say “apparently.” And CERTAINLY I should say “so far.”