The Publishing Crap-Shoot
Television stations have created online forums for viewers and may use the information there to make programming decisions. Game developers solicit input from users through virtual communities over the Internet. Airlines and hotels have developed increasingly sophisticated databases of customers.
Publishers, by contrast, put up Web sites where, in some cases, readers can sign up for announcements of new titles. But information rarely flows the other way — from readers back to the editors.
The blog post reminds us that there is room in the industry for a new business model, something outside of digital or print-on-demand. I think there remains a way to make publishing traditional printed books profitable.
Well, yes, I think we all agree. But the question remains, how do you stop a runaway train and turn it around?