The future of books, today


From: TheGuardian on Facebook
Thursday 26 January 2012
Richard Lea · guardian.co.uk

There is much talk of bright tomorrows for publishing at New York‘s Digital Book World expo, but how optimistic are readers?

While we’ve all been thinking about Andrew Miller and the Costa’s new enthusiasm short stories and Rushdie’s troubles in Jaipur, in New York, publishers have been looking to the future.

Many reports from the Digital Book World conference are brimming with positivity, with the independent publisher Dominique Raccah singing the praises of books created “at the end of a community-building process”, the author and futurist David Houle celebrating the astonishing fact that “more books [were] published this week than … in all of 1950” and Barnes and Noble‘s James Hilt suggesting that the flood of data sweeping through an industry which is finally catching up with the digital age “helps us all”. But gloom isn’t that far behind – optimism “wanes” when executives are asked about the future for publishing and readers alike.

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