Adoption of new technologies can disrupt market structures, leading to the demise of processes rendered obsolete (such as scribal labour) or eventually creating a new practice (such as the free publication of a crowdsourced encyclopaedia). In the case of the publishing industry, the current changes observed due to the prevalent use of ICT and the Internet are reminiscent of the changes observed throughout the fifteenth through eighteenth centuries, when technological changes led to new market players, new products and services, and new consumption habits. Publishers have benefitted from economies of scale and a significant reduction of costs, though not without a transformation in the sector. Further, while writers and readers appear to welcome digital libraries and printing on demand, believing it represents a liberation of tyrannical intermediaries, we will argue that, as in the past, new intermediaries are emerging with adapted gate-keeper roles.
|Organisation||Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication (ESHCC)|
Navarrete, T. (2020). Publishing. In Handbook of Cultural Economics Third Edition (pp. 457–465). doi:10.4337/9781788975803.00057