Some of it was old news - publishers are selling digital versions for e-Readers. Yeah, heard that before, although this was interesting:
Across the publishing industry, revenue rose 1.8%, to $3.71 billion, in the first half of 2009, according to the Association of American Publishers. In the first half of 2009, e-book sales reached $61.2 million, up from $24.6 million a year earlier, the AAP says.Keep in mind, though, those figures include things like textbooks.
… Cengage Learning … has found that selling digital copies alongside physical books has done little to erode demand for physical books…. Cengage sells digital versions of its textbooks online for about half the price of its physical titles. It also sells individual e-book chapters for as little as $1.99. "It's one of the fastest-growing parts of our business…Here’s a couple of new ideas, though. Some publishers are catering to businesses.
O'Reilly and Pearson Education run Safari Books Online, a service that lets budget-conscious companies and universities make certain digital books available to large pools of users at a time. "In this economy, the business is a little stronger because when people cut their training budgets, this becomes a cheaper option," says Paige Mazzoni, vice-president of marketing at Safari, which boasts more than 15 million users and expects revenue to double this year.And here’s an idea that, although not totally new, was news to me:
Some providers of Netflix-like book-reading services hope to enter revenue-sharing agreements with publishers as well. Take Paperspine.com, whose users can keep books for as long as they want, then mail them back to get new ones for a subscription that starts at $15 a month.Just last Friday, we discussed a guy doing something similar for his own book. He urged buyers of his book to pass it on to friends (who would then voluntarily send him money) and the cycle would continue until the book wore out. Not exactly like Netflix. If I were a fast reader and didn't like to save books, then a monthly subscription for books might be a good idea. Hmm.