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ERIC Number: EJ842147
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-May-15
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0363-0277
Books Born Digital
Eaton, Lance
Library Journal, v134 n9 p26-28 May 2009
It used to be that a book was published first as a hardcover, then as a lower-cost paperback. With increasingly tech-savvy consumers demanding instantaneous access to content in various formats, that publishing protocol has in the last decade changed to one in which the book in codex form often remains the focus, but digital "extras" like audio excerpts and e-chapters act as enticements toward the purchase of the hard copy. More recently, a new phenomenon has emerged, one in which a title comes first in digital form and then--if at all--in physical form. It's not so much a buffet-style approach to content as it is a dishing out of select content at select times and, often, at discounted prices. Though it's still too early to assess the upshot of "digital firsts"/digital exclusives for authors, publishers, distributors, librarians, retailers, and--most important--consumers, three popular approaches dominate for serving up digital content in this manner. These approaches are digital appetizers, digital sides, and digital entrees. For publishers, this digital-first/digital-exclusive approach to content can help to reduce production and distribution costs and indicate potential sales of future hardcopy output. For the review press, because digital content facilitates quicker distribution from author to publisher to reader, the entire reviewing process may need to change (i.e., to generate more timely reviews, digital galleys will have to be reviewed instead of the traditional hardcopy galleys). Given the rising cost of business, the environmentally friendly aspect of digital content, and the instantaneous access it can afford, wider application of digital-first/digital-exclusive publications seems inevitable. A 2008 Frankfurt Book Fair study surveying 1000 publishing professionals from over 30 countries showed that 40 percent believe e-content will overtake traditional books in sales by 2018. It's safe to say one can expect more digital firsts and exclusives in the interim.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Germany