Saturday, February 23, 2008

Silly things on my mind today....

I'm puzzled.

Fake Steve Jobs made me laugh, and then I heard Tim Egan tripping out on his "Book Lust" post about how (the real) Steve Jobs was dumb because he said: "...people don't read any more".

So, do people really don't read any more? Or is it that people don't read books any more?
I'm leaning towards something like: people don't read books as much as they did before.

But does that mean people aren't reading as much as they did before?
Personally, I read more these days than I did..say...2 years ago. But my reading isn't as much on paper, as it is digital(you know...blogs, news sites, web sites, bla bla).
Bet you there are others like me.

The question is, am I contributing to the dissipation of book culture? I'm not a very micro level, I probably am.
But then, am I that passionate about books as a medium, to begin with? Probably not.

I thought Tim Egan somewhat accurately conveyed my general attitude towards reading: paper or plastic, it's the story that sells. I could lay back on a hammock on a sunny afternoon with a glass of lemonade and a good paperback, or I could be scrolling through the same book in my Firefox window.

But I wonder, is the attitude changing? Are the masses leaning towards being on the hammock with their lemonade and an Amazon Kindle, while the minorities would ignore their open Firefox windows to finish the last few pages of a gripping paperback?

I'm trying really hard to confuse myself with all these questions because at the heart of all this lies answers to some other questions I had:

- As different mediums for consumption emerge, is it sensible to allow the new(by virtue of their efficacies alone) to replace the old?

- Shouldn't the economics of each (older)medium evolve with the introduction of (newer)competing mediums?

- Is it wise to build business models for new mediums based on the models used by preceding mediums?

- What part does convergence play in all this? Is co-existence in anyone's interest, but a publishers(more mediums for distribution)?

- Are publishing economics being dictated by distributors? (I know the answer to this one!)

- Is there a chance that publishing economics could be dictated by publishers? Would that work out for the "Author > Publisher > Distributor > Consumer" value chain?

- Should we be thinking about older versions of value chains, in determining economics for new mediums? If not, what are the new value chains in each vertical/niche? While we're on the subject, what is the value creation in each vertical/niche?

- Why would anyone ever make a product that looked so butt-ugly? Look at it. It's butt-ugly. How could anyone ever sell that for $399 and expect it to sell?
WHAT?! It sold out in 5.5 hours?! But how many? Now why wouldn't you want people to know THAT? Hmm...................:)