Monday, May 09, 2005

The publishing industry (both for books and newspapers & magazines) is confronting today a major problem: there simply are not enough readers for the number of books and newspapers published. A recent blog in New York, run by writer M.J. Rose, caught my attention when it spoke about this problem directly with the following story. If we cannot reverse this situation, the world of books and magazines and newspapers -- as we know it -- is doomed....


during a lunch with a major publishing exec in NYC ....he said to MJ Rose:

the problem (in the publishing industry today) is WE DO NOT HAVE ENOUGH READERS TODAY, that is why publishing is going ............................................downhill.

QUOTE: "We were standing on the corner outside the restaurant, and before my friend the publishing maven crossed the street to go back to his office, he left me with one final 'bon mot' that I'd like to share with you.

The real issue, the saddest part of the story, the mess that the book industry is in today, is that we do not have enough readers for the number of books we are publishing to all do well.

We do not have enough readers for even one quarter of all the books we are publishing to do well.


And NO, NO, NO, he does not think there are too many books.Quite the opposite.The problem, he says, is we do not have enough readers.

"I think that the larger issue of static/declining readership is the real heart of the matter. It's pathetic that, as an industry, we refuse to really deal with what afflicts us. The obvious way to sell more copies of books is to raise the level of the water. Right now we're battling over a little pond, and instead of noticing that the water is draining and doing something about it, we just keep talking about how each of our little pieces of the pond could be better managed."

NOTICE TO ALL NEWSPAPER COLUMNISTS, REPORTERS, PUNDITS and TALKING HEADS on TV worldwide: this issue needs to be addressed publicly. we are in a world now that for several reasons simply does not have enough readers for the number of books, magazines and newpapers published to do well enough to stay in business. The competition from the Internet, blogs, TV, DVDs, video games and then entire leisure time culture of play has turned READERS into a dying breed, a vanishing breed.