Talk of the Town: 8 Things that Happened in the Publishing Industry in February 2021

In February 2021, the vaccine rollout lends hope to the future and causes questions as to what, exactly, that future will look like? Much has changed since last March, and the industry wonders what changes, digital and otherwise, are here to stay.

That’s why Anthem Press has curated 8 note-worthy articles that contribute to a glimpse of the current state and future trajectory of the publishing industry. Whether data, news or commentary, we aim to keep you informed.

1. Ye olde Substack: publishing’s hot new business model has 17th-century origins

Noticed a lot more email newsletters around than a few years ago? As social media sites become less trusted as legitimate sources of news and information, many have turned to the email newsletter as a way of finding out accurate information, or as a way of reaching their readers directly through subscriptions. This new business model has, however, been around for a while: what we are seeing now is, in fact, it’s digital re-birth. Find out more here.

2. IPA Commends Beijing’s Passage of a Copyright Law Amendment

In a report received by members of the IPA this week, it has been announced that “The IPA is pleased that the long-awaited reform of the Chinese copyright act has resulted in a strengthening of copyright in China”. Find out more about the amendment and what it means for the industry here.

3. Why 2021 is Setting Up to Be a Pivotal Year for Digital Content in Libraries

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on libraries: specifically on their ability to offer digital content. The pandemic led to publishers making changes to their licensing to allow libraries to offer digital content: but will this continue post pandemic? Find out more about the future of digital content in libraries here.

4. Richard Charkin: Brexit Ushers British Publishing Into New Territories

Richard Charkin delves into the consequences of Brexit for British publishers, and what it means for the future of publishing. “The world has changed and will change even faster”: find out why here.

5. Open Access, Conspiracy Theories and the Democratization of Knowledge

Robert Harington considers how although open access does, to some extent, democratize science, it doesn’t go far enough: other actions should also be considered. Read the full piece here.

6. Libby is stuck between libraries and publishers in the e-book war

Libby: the free app which allows you to borrow e-books and digital audiobooks from your public library. It has helped to save libraries; and it has also accelerated a funding crisis. It’s newfound popularity is costing libraries more than they can afford. Find out more here.

7. Association of University Presses Opens International Pairings Pilot

Based in New York City, the association of University Presses recently announced a new pilot program designed to pair member-presses with non-member campus publishing operations in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean, and Latin America. Find out more about the new scheme here.

8. PA warns of huge financial hit from proposed Open Access policy

A proposed new Open Access (OA) policy from funding body UK Research & Innovation (UKRI) could see UK universities and journals take a huge financial hit, a new report for the Publishers Association warns. Find out more about the policy here.