"The Problem: specialist books in the Humanities and Social Sciences (including but not exclusively monographs) are under threat due to spiralling prices and reduced library funds.
Access is restricted: while academics could choose to bypass existing publishers and just post content on the Web, the general consensus within academia is that they would prefer to have their books professionally published.
Only a few hundred copies make it into the eight to twelve thousand research universities, and very few teaching universities have access to these materials. For many individuals private purchase is beyond their reach.
A Possible Solution: cover the costs of creating the first digital copy through a library consortium and make the titles open access. Publishers would continue to generate additional revenues from the sale of print, ePub and PDFs in bespoke formats."
(Frances Pinter, 2011)
"If the story of the Three Little Pigs broke today, how would a modern newspaper cover it? That's the concept behind a new TV ad for The Guardian, the newspaper's first major TV spot for 25 years.
The spot launches a campaign to promote the paper's 'open journalism' approach – its name for the way in which it is attempting to involve its readership in not just commenting on stories, but contributing to and even determining its news agenda. 'Open is our operating system, a way of doing things that is based on a belief in the open exchange of information, ideas and opinions and its power to bring about change,' said Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief of Guardian and MediaGuardian publisher Guardian News & Media. 'The campaign is designed to bring that philosophy to life for new and existing readers.'
The launch ad examines the way in which the tale of the Three Little Pigs might be covered by The Guardian today, with all the different forms of content and different channels that implies. It also seeks to get over the way in which stories develop over time as new facts come to light and the effect of social media on switching the focus of coverage and debate.
An epic two-minute version (shown above) debuted on Channel 4 last night.
Comparisons will inevitably be made with 1986's classic Points of View by BMP (indeed the Guardian itself has said that the new ad is a 'nod' to the old one. They share an endline: The Whole Picture).
But while Points of View got over its message succintly and elegantly, Three Little Pigs is less focussed, less pithy. This can be seen as a reflection of the changing nature of media – newspapers are now less about relating THE story and more about acting as a platform for multiple strands around a topic to be explored by multiple participants, including the readers themselves, in real time. But it makes for a less memorable piece of advertising storytelling.
'The aim is to reach progressive audiences and show them why they should spend time with us,' according to Andrew Miller, chief executive of the Guardian's parent company Guardian Media Group. But you have to wonder whether such progressive types would not be aware of what the Guardian is doing anyway? The ad will probably make existing Guardian readers feel better about themselves, but will its slightly daunting complexity attract many new ones?"
(Patrick Burgoyne, 1 March 2012, Creative Review)
16 June 2009
"Beautiful! Actually, you've covered this before: the end of print theme today is like the end of theater 60 years ago when TV was making its baby steps. Today we are talking about the end of the old management along with the publishing model which has been gainfully exploited for far too long. In order to survive and thrive they have to give away more every day, and successful navigating a mag or a paper this pit of freebies and discounts will indicate the future great talent in publishing. You know, since paper and rent is not getting any cheaper and all... But 'end if print?!' Goodness, no!"
(Anton Shmerkin, 1 November 2009, comment on magCulture.com)
"This is another official update to the original 'Shift Happens' video. This completely new [Autumn] 2009 version includes facts and stats focusing on the changing media landscape, including convergence and technology, and was developed in partnership with The Economist."
(Xplane and The Economist)