An unfortunate side effect to the lengthy transition of print to digital is our long suffering endurance of stale articles in mainstream media rehashing the same points as every other article in mainstream media. Crain’s serves the stodgy old dish the same old way in this article. Could a mainstream media please interview some new people or cover this story from a different perspective? For instance, more than Jane Friedman’s reprint venture or the lukewarm success of OR books, what intrigues me are the innovations in professional publishing and academic publishing (Oxford’s online version of the Encyclopedia of Enlightement makes me drool more than any e-Reader). Or the actual cost of book production now: add print production to digital production and there’s a percentage of revenue going to manufacturing that would make any industry unhappy.
Also, there’s a bigger story than just print media. The transition is not merely about print to digital but how all our lives are being reshaped around technology, whether we like it or not, and whether we are conscious of it or not. It is changing the way we shop, the way we communicate and what we expect from communication, our leisure time, documentation of the most mundane to the most historical with a capital H, and whether I can look up a word on my smartphone while reading in bed. What is happening to print is only part of a larger watershed change to the way we live.