Meanwhile, In The Tragic, Backward Book World

Will Google, Apple, and SCOTUS Decide the Future of Book Publishing This Year?

Two ongoing court battles involving large, technology multinationals may go before the Supreme Court this year, and the outcome of either case could alter the course of publishing as we know it — or maybe not.

Apple’s conspiracy to fix eBook prices and the Google Book Search case.

Apple doesn’t give a damn about books, period. They’re just another — minor — feature to keep people in their “ecosystem.” A checkbox on a boring corporate Me-Too list.

I surrendered on the Google Book Search issue a while ago. I have to admit that I’ve found it useful myself. And not just for finding a quote — when the page in question is available — but for finding books I’ve read long ago but couldn’t recall the title of and wanted to re-buy and re-read. The Authors Guild continues its splendid record of stupidity and opposition. I no longer oppose it.

The big publishers continue to shoot themselves in the head and gleefully proclaim victory: The e-book Industry is in a State of Decline – 2015 Year in Review

Meanwhile Simon and Schuster reported that e-book sales represented 20.4% of total revenue down from 25.1% in last year’s third quarter, while all digital sales accounted for 24.8% compared to 28.3% in 2014. CEO Carolyn Reidy said she is not concerned yet about the drop in e-book sales, noting that part of the decline is due to product mix as well as fewer people buying e-reader devices for the first time. She said S&S analysis doesn’t indicated that higher e-book prices are behind the e-book decline.

Boldfaced emphasis added by me [typo in the original text; typo might disappear].

Her “analysts” have their heads up their anals and she’s a moron — still a moron — to believe them. Most food prices have doubled since 2008 — the year of the first modern major Wall Street collapse — and hunger has increased in America (a sentence I never in my entire lifetime thought I would ever write). There’s no connection between higher prices and more hunger? No connection between higher eBook prices and lower sales at major publishers?

Anyway …

I’ll repeat what I’ve said many times before:

1) Publishers are information engines, not producers of objects.

2) The current book publishing leadership must die off before there’s any progress towards a sustainable future.

3) Encoding metacontent and metadata are more important than the books themselves.

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