December 2011 Issue


News Features

This spring, some research had me making a series of calls to a range of people in the book publishing business, including authors, agents, publishers, and consultants. The topic-in broad terms-was about the shift to digital. How did these publishing leaders see the shift occurring today? How was it going so far, and-more importantly-what might the publishing landscape look like in 3 or 5 years?
By - Posted Dec 05, 2011
Money is the root of all evil. It is also the foundation upon which economies are built. Certainly, it's high on the list of objectives for most organizations. Hey, even not-for-profits have to cover costs. So how do we reconcile this yearning for earning with such laudable corporate mottos as "do no evil"? Companies with good reputations generally earn them by delivering genuine value to customers. These, and others, often offset craven capitalistic endeavors by doing good works. Value and giving back are certainly admirable tactics, and I would not discourage any company from following this righteous path.
By - Posted Dec 12, 2011
Content in the cloud is a natural evolution from storing files on our desktops-but the content creation explosion that has overfilled our inboxes and overwhelmed our social networks won't be solved by moving the growing mass of data from a private realm to a public one.In fact, there's a solution on the horizon that promises to keep the clouds fluffy and the content contextual. It's the "curated cloud," and it's the next big thing. By one measure, we created 5EB (exabytes) of data from the beginning of time until 2008. Now we're creating 5EB every 2 days. Where did that statistic come from? The folks who should know: Google.
Posted Dec 19, 2011
During interviews with a publisher client recently, one of the managers likened his organization's approach to digital product development as a goat rodeo, as in, "Our managers are crazy. After each one of them provides input to our project, it's a goat rodeo." The colorful reference is to a chaotic situation, typically in a corporate or bureaucratic setting, according to Wikipedia. A goat rodeo involves several people who have different agendas and perceptions of what's going on around them, and reconciling those views is difficult. Despite energy and effort, it's impossible to bring any sense of order to the situation.
By - Posted Dec 20, 2011
You would be hard-pressed to find anything that has changed the way we communicate and share information more than social networking sites. No matter how much change these sites have spurred, the world of social networking has been undergoing its own overhaul in 2011. The introduction of Google+ and f8 caused plenty of discussion and, in some cases, public outcry. Myspace drew new interest from investors with a push to become an "entertainment portal," but 2012 just might be the year we find out who the winners and losers of the battle may be.
By - Posted Dec 07, 2011
Outsell, Inc.'s release of "The Business Intelligence Landscape Today: The New Rules of Aggregation" in September shed some new light on where content aggregators are succeeding and where they need to change in order to meet evolving market needs.
By - Posted Dec 14, 2011

Featured Stories

There are plenty of changes afoot on this year's list, as well as at the magazine. As you read through these pages, you'll notice a change in the EContent 100 categories-and a subsequent change in the companies we're honoring this year. As we focused less on enterprise content companies and more on the world of digital publishing and media, the judges had to re-imagine the list-and relearn the judging process. While many of the old standbys still made it onto this year's list, there are plenty of fresh faces as well-many of which are shaking up the content industry.
Posted Nov 29, 2011
The 2011-2012 EContent 100, a list of the 100 Companies that Matter Most in the Digital Content Industry.
Posted Nov 29, 2011
The EContent 100 judges include fellow Information Today, Inc. editors, EContent magazine contributing editors, and other experts in the digital content industry.
Posted Nov 29, 2011
The EContent team suggests some sites, projects, and resources that, while outside the scope of the EContent 100 list, are well-worth a closer look.
By - Posted Dec 09, 2011

Columns

A few days before the wedding, I found myself sitting with my laptop searching YouTube for makeup tips. In a matter of seconds, I'd found exactly what I was looking for. I discovered a channel called The MakeUpChair With Sineady Cady (she has a really lovely accent, and the videos are worth watching just to hear her). Sineady is a young makeup artist living in Ireland, who uses a blog and her YouTube channel to promote her brand and find new clients. Her email address is posted right there on the channel, so if you're looking for someone to do your makeup for a special day, you can shoot her a message.
By - Posted Dec 27, 2011
Whereas my personal Los Angeles community of technological early adopters tends to be driven to buy the coolest, most cutting-edge gadgets, we often forget (and I'm the most guilty here) that a huge chunk of the population is driven more by a good value. It could be a function of generation, socioeconomic status, the overall economy, or simply priorities, but while I expected to immediately put digital deals in place with my new film library, I've been forced to recognize that I must first focus on selling this audience entertainment in the way that it wants it right now. That just happens to be on the uber-traditional DVD.
By - Posted Dec 01, 2011
Guess what's back in vogue: that lovely old chestnut, the paywall. In September, The Boston Globe announced it was putting up a paywall for its new http://bostonglobe.com website, leaving the very popular http://boston.com intact but apparently with less free content.It's part of a trend we are seeing in the newspaper world. Desperate to find new sources of revenue, traditional media is trying the tried-and-true paywall. The New York Times--which owns The Boston Globe by the way--made the transition last spring, but this was a paywall with a twist. It wasn't so much a wall as maybe a hedge.
By - Posted Jan 31, 2012
Every year at this time we take a look downstream- revenue stream, that is. Nearly a decade ago when I started writing these annual forecasts of money-making propositions that looked to be promising in the months ahead, most publishers were looking to wring what they could from the desktop experience. But the story of 2011-2012 is content's migration to a host of new platforms and devices, each of which holds the promise (the promise, mind you) of altering the free-content models that bedeviled the web. Whether on or off the traditional web browser, many of the revenue-generating ideas are being influenced by a new age of apps.
By - Posted Dec 06, 2011
When I think of digital publishing over the next year and beyond, I see three trends dominating the landscape: mobility, ubiquity, and touchability. User-generated content (UGC), social sharing, and social advertising are replacing the old-world concepts of traditional advertising. Your technology (today or tomorrow) should be able to support this paradigm shift.
By - Posted Dec 13, 2011
It's been a busy year for U.K. media. It started off with the pomp and ceremony of the Royal Wedding, moved to the embarrassing unravelling of News Corp. over a phone-hacking scandal, and ended with the devastating riots, which started in North London and then inspired copycat lawlessness in cities across the country for a few alarming days in August. When you look at it all written out like that, it's a wonder we survived at all!
By - Posted Dec 20, 2011
As someone who favors open standards and open source, I think HTML5 may become an attractive alternative to Flash. After all, the World Wide Web is built on open standards. What really caught my eye though was an Adobe press release issued on Aug. 1: Adobe announced an "Early Preview of New HTML5 Web Motion and Interaction Design Tool" called Adobe Edge. Adobe Edge is a new motion and interaction design tool that lets creative pros build animated web content using web standards such as HTML, JavaScript, and CSS.
By - Posted Dec 20, 2011
No longer is it just editors and agents on the subways and buses with their submission pile on Sony e-readers; it's actual, real, live, nonindustry people who just love to read. Harris Interactive, Inc. polled more than 2,000 people in July of this year and found that roughly 15% of those polled already owned an e-reader, and 15% of those who did not own an e-reader were likely to buy one in the next 6 months.
By - Posted Dec 15, 2011