Monday, November 28, 2005

Conglomerates taking over the book world ?

A couple of news stories about big companies tryng to become bigger or take over the Book world generally. First is the news that the British book chain Waterstones is going to hear the decision of the Office of Fair Trading with regard to its attempt to take over the smaller book chain Ottakers, something to which a good many British authors are fully opposed, as it will severely reduce competition, and limit the outlets where their books are sold. Given that the book stores themselves are facing stiff competition from the supermarket chains, the proposed Waterstones takeover does not bode well for readers - or authors.

Then there's the continuing problems of Google and its Google Print project. There's an interesting article in the Times about how the Google Print project could well lead to the death of academic publishing - something I'd rather not see, since that's the kind of publishing I'm interested in for my own work !

Finally, as a counter-balance to all that negativity, there's an interview with the wonderful Terry Pratchett in which he discusses his OBE, the Discworld books, especially Thud and his childhood.

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