June 20, 2010
June 20, 2010
June 23, 2010
15.67.1 - 15.67.8
A New Model for Author Driven Digital Publishing
Books in print still dominate the college campus. The long-standing model for publishing involves corporate entities that take the work of an author and add value by providing review, typesetting, publishing, marketing, and distribution. This model has been very successful, but is not adapting well as technology moves beyond paper for communication. The most fundamental threat to the traditional publishing model is that the Internet creates a culture where information is perceived to be ‘free’ and people are reluctant to pay for content. This creates a major dilemma for authors and publishers who seek compensation for work. There have been numerous attempts to adopt non-traditional approaches to publishing that have had some success, but not enough to displace traditional publishing.
This paper describes an approach to digital publishing that allows authors to directly deliver con- tent to readers, using advertising revenues for compensation. Paper based copies of books are still available for those who want to purchase them. The details of the method, opportunities, and chal- lenges will be discussed.
The author began posting course materials on the internet in 1995. Since then the quality of course materials has expanded to include more notes, additional course support materials, and a number of custom written books1. This format has been extremely popular, primarily because the materi- als are freely available on the Internet. This approach is not new and there are a large number of extremely valuable resources with similar approaches2, 3, 4, 5. Originally the materials were hosted on a university server, and as such were not suitable for commercialization. In August 2009 the materials were moved to a private website to allow commercialization.
Over time the author has explored various approaches to structuring and optimizing the website for his own materials. In the next stage of the work the site is being expanded to multiple authors.
A sample of a web page from the site is shown in Figure 1. The content is the major portion of the screen, while the left and top side shows the look-and-feel in January 2010. The critical features of the page are a clear title at the top of the screen. On the left hand side is a Logo with a link to
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