Booksquare Awards A Rare Gold Star

December 13th, 2005 · 2 Comments
by Booksquare

Gold StarSuch is our luck that our most sincere attempts at sincerity are often met with skepticism — still we persevere. We are very excited at the moment and pleased as punch with the publishing industry. We have been tingling with excitement about the recent digital warehouse announcement from HarperCollins. It’s like the great publishing gods finally heard our plea! Here are the basics, in all their glory:

Brian Murray, HC president, said the company is intent “on building a digital warehouse that mirrors the one in the physical world.” HC has some 3,500 digital copies of its books, but those are in its production database and are not suitable for use by Google or Amazon in their various online initiatives, or for sale to consumers. The creation of a digital warehouse “will give our software partners 24/7 access to the material,” Murray said.

As you read on, you’ll notice some rather quaint speculation about how HC will monetize this new warehouse. We would suggest that, like most warehouses, the money comes from efficient processes, well-organized stock, and a killer distribution system. It doesn’t take much in the way of imagination (though we have plenty to spare) to see the range of potential this creates.

But wait! There’s more. Though we are ready with our own suggestions on the matter (hint: text is always, always, always better than proprietary, cumbersome, easily surpassed formats), we do take heart in Murray’s vision:

Murray hopes that, in cooperation with other publishers and vendors, the publishing industry will be able to develop one standard for digital files.

See music industry — the skills hones in kindergarten remain the best.

Such is our joy at this bold step toward modernity that we will not raise questions regarding formats or process or anything. We’re not even going to wonder out loud about the digital forklift.

File Under: The Future of Publishing

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