What if the Book Business Collapses?
So the rest
of us, readers and writers and lovers of books,
entrepreneurs and technologists, those of us really
interested in the voracious appetite of the powerful
and relatively affluent group, are going to have to
come up with new and different ways to get books
written, published and in the hands of readers.
Imagine: what would happen if every publisher in the world went out of business tomorrow? If every book store closed it’s doors?
Here’s what I think: I think we would see a flourishing of innovation and the kind of excitement the book business has not seen since the printing press was invented. These companies (sellers and publishers) aren’t all going to close their doors, but a good number might.
Lamentable? Maybe. Or maybe this is a fabulous opportunity for something new.
I’m optimistic. New technologies are coming along that change the economics of books: ebooks, ipods, print-on-demand, the web, and more to come yet. The readers are there, maybe fewer of them, but no less passionate. The writers are there. And let’s face it, if the doom and gloom in the business is right, whatever model these companies were using hasn’t worked all that well.
So it’s up to us — all of us who care about books — to figure out what the book business is going to look in the next decade or so.
Here's a new study analyzing tagging practices. Is this "indexing by mob" or is it a valuable source of vocabulary?
PS. I really really recommend this book.
How many entries can there be under "Bwa haa haa haa haa...."?
It's worth taking a look even without any notes. Highly recommended book, too.
The entire story of Pride and Prejudice is here.
"The index entry for ‘Cambridge Colleges, Peterhouse’ betrayed uncanny parallels, some believed, with Trevor-Roper’s perception of its members in the 1980s: ‘high-table conversation not very agreeable . . . four revolting fellows of; main source of perverts’. Just as admirers of his hero Gibbon often head straight for the footnotes, so the first port of call for connoisseurs of Trevor-Roper is the index."
Peterhouse Blues posting by Henry Farrell. The comments contain some hilarity.
It's a fun place to stop by in the mornings.