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Stephen Abram's Posts About Library Land
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Is Print Dead? [Infographic]
Posted on: August 30, 2010, 6:08 pm
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What a great infographic — so well done. I have yet to take the plunge to an e-reader. I work in a library and have all the access I need to printed books for free and the rest I read online. However, I too have seen many of my print addicted friends and family fall head over heels in love with their e-reader.
Yet, I can’t help but think that print is in serious trouble given that yesterday it was announced that the Oxford English Dictionary (yes, THE only and only OED) will not be printed again and the next edition will be electronic only:
For now the OED that is going electronic is just the huge multi-volume set with EVERY word in it with etymology. It makes sense to have one that is up-to-date and maybe even include notes on nominated new words. The dozens of other versions of the OED are perfectly safe. No one ever carried that monster around although there is a big heavy boxed two volume bible paper version that came with a huge magnifiying glass.
And the OED is talking about the edition that will be published 10 (yes Ten) years from now when they’re finished!
It seems to me possible that Print-on-Demand could turn out to be the elephant in the room. It eliminates the concept of out-of-print and makes self-publishing fare easier, potentially extending the long tail and disintermediating some parts of the publishing industry. You could regard it as a single-use e-book