Are eBooks Destroying Traditional Publishing?

This article comes from NPR. It addresses the changing role of traditional publishing. This article matches up well with the one from yesterday on the increase in eBook reading among Americans.

E-Books Destroying Traditional Publishing? The Story’s Not That Simple

by ZOE CHACE

December 27, 2012 4:00 PM

What counts as a book these days, in a world of Kindles, Nooks and iPads — and eager talk about new platforms and distribution methods?

Traditional publishers are traveling a long and confusing road into the digital future. To begin with, here’s the conventional wisdom about publishing: E-books are destroying the business model.

People expect them to be cheaper than physical books, and that drives down prices. But the story’s not that simple. For one thing, digital publishers have the same problem that record labels do: piracy. And there’s just not the same stigma attached to pirating an e-book as there is to holding up a Barnes & Noble.

It turns out, though, that some publishers are doing pretty well despite the piracy problem. “We’ve had an incredible year,” says Sourcebooks President Dominique Raccah. “Last year was the best year in the company’s history. This year we beat that, which I didn’t think was even possible.” Raccah adds that her company is doing well because of digital publishing, not in spite of it. “It’s been an amazing ride,” she says.

It turns out there are some huge advantages — at least for publishers. A big one: The price of an e-book isn’t fixed the way it is with physical books. Ten years ago, a publisher would have sent out its books to the bookstore with the price stamped on the cover. After that, it was done — the publisher couldn’t put it on sale to sell more books.

To continue reading, please visit http://www.npr.org/2012/12/27/168068655/e-books-destroying-traditional-publishing-the-storys-not-that-simple One can even listen to the story rather than read it.

About reginajeffers

Regina Jeffers is the award-winning author of Austenesque, Regency and contemporary novels.
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