Into tomorrow

Publishing has changed. The old media rules have gone.

Readers are in control. They have new ways to share knowledge.

And everything happens at breakneck speed.

You don’t need a large company to publish. You don’t need print. You don’t even need your own servers, designers or developers. You could get by without an office – but that may not be the best idea.

You certainly don’t need a bloated management corps sucking ideas, life and resources away from the frontline operation.

A computer, smartphone or tablet is enough so long as there’s a decent connection.

You no longer need large amounts of capital – although some money is necessary. Almost all income can go to the people producing the words, pictures, audio or video.

People still want information. Facts come first. Informed opinion is good.

Publishers, editors and front-line journalists are no longer remote from audiences. They can’t preach from ivory towers. Readers respond almost immediately correcting mistakes, disputing facts, opposing views.

That’s something to celebrate, not run from.

Dymocks exits ebook publishing after 15 months

Dymocks New Zealand

Dymocks New Zealand closed in 2012, now the company is retreating from ebooks

Australia’s BRW magazine reports Dymocks exits ebook publishing after 15 months. The company told BRW the program was a ‘innovative experiment’ but the challenges were too great.

Dymocks managing director Steve Cox told BRW:

“We learned a lot about that market and those customers but unfortunately the constraints of the platform and business model meant we couldn’t fulfil the vision”.

This story doesn’t make it clear if there’s something systematically wrong with ebook publishing or if the closure is part of Dymock’s winding-down. The company closed its New Zealand business in late 2012 and appears to be in retreat.

I’m interested to know if there’s a viable space in the ebook business for a quality operation sitting between the giant, global powerhouses and the niche publishers. What do you think?

Leanpub – a wonderful eBook publishing model

Leanpub ebook publishing

Leanpub send me a mail saying an updated version of Paul Bradshaw’s book Scraping for Journalists is available. The mail includes links to download the book in PDF, EPUB or Mobi formats – or perhaps all three if I want, there’s no digital rights management to worry about.

Because I already purchased the book, the updates are free.

Leanpub is a great way of selling ebooks: buy one, all future updates are free.

Royalties are generous for writers, around 90% less a 50 cents per book fee. If I ever get around to writing another book, this is where I’ll go first.

Another great thing about Leanpub, is the books are reasonably priced. Scraping for Journalists doesn’t include as much information as you might get from an everyday paperback, but the price is about half what you’d pay for a printed book. There’s also a money-back guarantee.

Oh, and it case you’re wondering the Scraping for Journalists book is good too.