I've got to find a better way of discovering new and interesting blogs. Too many good ones are slipping below my radar and I'm stumbling across them accidentally. Such is the case this evening with one called Times Emit, by Peter Collingridge, Managing Director of Apt Studio Ltd. I just added Peter's RSS feed to my reader and I would encourage you to do the same.
Here's one post in particular that really hit home. (Thanks to the Absurdity blog for linking to it, otherwise I probably never would have discovered the post or the Times Emit blog.) In the post, Peter is more or less talking about the effect of The Innovator's Dilemma, one of my favorite books. How about this excerpt from Peter's post?:
The problem with the "web 2.0" technologies listed above is not just that they are incompatible with the target audiences of most books, but that publishers haven't yet harnessed the basics of "web 1.0".
How many publisher sites even offer rich, up to date, better-than Amazon data? Attractive, intuitive design? Value-added content, access to authors? Search engine optimization? Flawless commerce and customer service? Above all, consistent and engaging communication of the singular proposition of that house and its authors? Booksellers are not immune from this criticism either.
How painful to read...and yet how true in so many ways.
I take this stuff pretty seriously, which is why we're making some changes to address it within my publishing group. I admit that we'll be taking baby steps at first, but our goal is to develop a longer-term vision that truly leverages the web capabilities that we publishers have largely missed out on. I'm not at liberty to provide the details yet, but rest assured I'll be hyping them as we roll things out going forward. Stay tuned for more...