Questions to Consider…

  • Can the traditional business model of publishing survive without evolution?

The current business model for publishing will have to change along with the changing delivery of “the book”.

  • What competitive threat is posed by Kindle to the traditional publishing industry?

Amazon decided on a ebook price of $9.99 per book, taking a loss per download  in order to increase market shares and encourage the sale of the Kindle device.  This opposes a threat to the “Big 6” publishing houses because the consumer now believes that the value of a book is no more than $9.99.

  • How will the emergence and adaptation of Kindle transform the publishing industry?

The emergence and adaptation of Kindle will transform the publishing industry because authors will go directly to the Kindle or other producers of like devices, thus eliminating the “middle man”.

  • Consider all the stakeholders in a vibrant book industry—authors, publishers, libraries, chain bookstores, independent bookstores, schools and readers. What does each group have to gain? What does each group have to lose?

Authors, will still have a venue to sell their “product”. They shouldn’t be affected either way.  It might actually make it easier to publish their work.

Publishers, have the most to lose.  The “device” producers will become the publishers in many cases.  If they adjust to the changing book market, they could still stay in the game.

Libraries, make most of their revenue from overdue book fines.  They will have to readjust their ebook lending policies to maybe include a monthly subscription fee.

Chain bookstores can offer both hard copies of books and ebook versions.  They will have to charge for in store access to make up for the loss of book sales or potential reduction of cover prices for hard books.

Independent bookstores will most likely feel the changes to the industry most.  It is likely that many of them will not survive.
Schools should see a reduction of costs unless hard textbook prices increase to make up for the loss in volume of sales.

The readers have the most to gain.  They can still buy or borrow a hard copy of a book, and yet they have the digital mode of delivery which adds a new convenience.  With all of the competition in the publishing industry, it should drive down the prices of books all the way around.  The bottom line is everyone will have to adapt to stay in business.

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