Thomas Bacher wrote in Inside Higher Ed today that books cannot continue as the be-all, end-all for university presses. He hypothesized that in order to remain relevant and successful, university presses need to incorporate digital devices and other means of new communication rather than shun them for traditional books. While books are important, he concedes, they are not everything.
Quotes of interest to me:
“Disruptive technologies — the Internet and digital information networks — have made the printed book less important. Information gatherers have found an abundance of material on their desktops. More important, the psychology of getting information is driven by quick searching and the generation of instantaneous results. Trying to change users’ actions under continual technology improvements is futile.”
“University presses . . . must also be concerned with aligning their interests with the strengths of their home institutions. By doing so, they become a vital tool in branding and marketing.”