Kodak hosts discussion on the future of book publishing


While the book market overall will remain relatively flat over the next three years, digital technologies will provide new opportunities and better processes for content creation, delivery and production.  That perspective was one of many shared by participants during an expansive roundtable discussion about the future of book publishing. Held at the New York Public Library and hosted by Kodak, the roundtable brought together executives from book publishing, manufacturing, retailing and distribution companies, as well as an author.

According to Chris Verlander, director of book segment marketing, Kodak, “While acknowledging both excitement and anxiety about the transformation taking place, there was optimism from the panelists about the benefits and advantages that digital technologies bring to the book market in today’s cross-platform publishing world.”

Topics, highlights and points-of-view shared by various participants included the fluctuating revenue model for e-books as publishers have assumed a number of new costs, such as licensing and privacy protection, associated with e-books. High-speed inkjet printing will have a significant impact on book manufacturing-“the biggest development in publishing in the past 50 years,” according to one panelist. It was also perceived that print-on-demand book production minimizes losses associated with returns, which can average 15% for many titles.

Participating in the roundtable were from Hachette Book Group, a US trade publisher; Baker & Taylor, a distributor of books, videos and music products; Webcrafters Inc, a leader in four-color printing and book manufacturing; Scholastic Corporation, the world’s largest publisher and distributor of children’s books; Lulu.com, a print-on-demand network for books; Harlequin Enterprises Ltd; and Barnes&Noble.com.

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