The future of books - publisher looks backwards, not forwards

18 March 2010

While this viral video, initially produced for internal use by publishers Dorling Kindersley (purveyors of endless DK Top 10 travel guides), receives top marks for ingenuity, it ultimately feels like an industry patting itself on the back, reassuring itself that no harm will come of it in the face of technological advancement.

It's true the Kindle, iPad and other eReaders present exciting new platforms to the publishing industry, but they also pose a threat to physical sales - a marketplace that major publishers can dominate and manipulate with impunity. In the future there'll be nothing to stop top-selling authors releasing material themselves (as bands have done since the advent of online distribution) or top execs breaking away to form micro-publishers; without the concerns or costs of production or distribution, editors and designers will be in high demand.

Anyway. You can enjoy the self-congratulating undertones of DK's efforts for yourself ("it's not true we don't like the way books feel in our hands" - did somebody say it was?) - watch it all the way through for the crazy-ass Memento-style twist:

7 comments

  • Nobby
    1:23 they add an "of" in the reverse part. Anyway, what's the point of books or kindle? Just watch the film.
  • Chris
    Saw it coming.
  • Paul S.
    Course you did, Chris. You probably saw the Statue of Liberty coming at the end of Planet of the Apes, didn't you? Meh.
  • Artemis
    That jumped out at me too Nobby, they cheated. And yeah, it was obvious part of the way down that it could be read in reverse.
  • Name (.
    Also, it's a blatant rip-off of http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42E2fAWM6rA.
  • John L.
    It's very clever, but it's still obvious that there is a generational change that is moving against books per se. I agree that content is still King however. This is a piece I wrote about this very subject a little while ago and I don't think it's far wrong. http://johnnylyle.co.uk/2009/10/21/why-social-media-matters/ I'm gonna put that video at the end of it now too!
  • MickeyB
    To quote John Lyle's 'brilliant' website: This is a great YouTube video I picked up from the brilliant writers at Bitterwallet.' That is all.

What do you think?

Connect with Facebook, Twitter, or just enter your email to sign in and comment.

Your comment