A Multiplicity of University Publishing

There continue to be calls to consolidate all publishing activity in a single organization or unit. The various participants in scholarly communications often are hostile to the very idea of competition. But the evidence is otherwise: a diversity of publishing venues, all operated independently, yield better and more innovative results.

A Single User Account

Academics’ expectations for user experience are set not by reference to improvements relative to the past but increasingly in comparison with their experiences on consumer internet services and mobile devices. The best solution for research, teaching, and learning would be a single account for each user, controlled by that individual, and accepted portably across services and platforms.

The New Gatekeepers are Economists

Apple colluded with publishers to set prices on books, but the Department of Justice seems not to have noticed the growing market position of Amazon. At what point does a company that trades in cultural products become too big a piece of public discourse?

A New Publishing Ecosystem Emerges

A new publishing ecosystem is emerging that includes among its participants O’Reilly Media, Pearson, Safari Books, Barnes & Noble, Microsoft, and Liberty Media. This new ecosystem may come to challenge the proprietary ebook networks of Amazon and Apple.

What Google Did Next

Google’s new initiatives show how impressive their knowledge of knowledge might become, especially if they pull off all the surprising and jaw-dropping mobile initiatives (Glass, driverless cars, others) they’re pursuing.