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In: Logos

The Macmillan Company New York, led by the Bretts, was a major player in American life. But it had a secret: the company was majority owned by the London parent. As the US came to eclipse the UK, the arrangement led to growing tensions. Finally, in 1951, London was persuaded to sell its stake. But the UK firm found itself unable to use the family name for a new American venture, sparking a legal fight that lasted until 2002. This account of an important event in publishing history adds new detail from archival sources, supporting a fresh reading and correcting earlier errors. It also brings into view a significant amount of material that is published for the first time. The article argues that, although there were hard business reasons for the sale, cultural and personal factors were also consequential and these two types of agency, rational and emotional, work in interrelated ways.

In: Logos

DesignAgility is an adaptation of the design thinking method and was developed to meet the specific needs of the publishing industry and the media sector in general. The authors of the eponymous book embedded DesignAgility into an agile framework that allows its users to effectively develop and implement media innovations with a small team. This sample chapter of the book focuses on Ideation and describes the qualified brainstorming and idea-generating in the innovation process. The needs of the users aka the ‘personas’ are reflected in so-called ‘user stories’. Through refinement the ideas are developed into possible product or service features. The chapter describes detailed steps from preparation to procedure and includes a checklist of how to easily follow the instructions for ideation. The visualization of the DesignAgility process shows where this step has to be taken within the whole innovation process.

In: Logos

In this article the authors analyse narratives of the ‘agents’ associated with book publishing in Latvia, instrumentalizing the Bourdieusian theoretical framework of habitus–capital–field in order to understand the particulars of power relationships in the national book publishing field. Based on the results of the narrative analysis, authors conclude that power relationships in book publishing in Latvia have historically shifted during periods when major social transformations have taken place in other fields of the social world (e.g. political, economic) and echoed in the publishing field in the form of altered conditions. Depending on each agent’s position in the field, these changes have meant that values and meanings linked with the practice of publishing have either had to be adjusted or been significantly disruptive.

In: Logos
Author: Miriam Johnson

The publishing industry has a variety of gatekeepers that play a role in deciding which works become books. This article acknowledges the main gatekeepers as the agent and publishers, but also draws attention to the author, who is the first gatekeeper, and the reader, who is the last. The connections between gatekeepers highlight the role of power in these positions. Using Foucault’s theories of archaeology and genealogy, this article argues that positions within the industry provide space for the gatekeepers to say what works deserve to be published. In doing so it highlights the dynamic flow of power, which rises from the bottom and provides a hierarchical structure within the industry.

In: Logos
Author: Jane Tappuni

This article assesses the opportunities for the publishing industry to utilize blockchain technologies to improve current processes in the book and journal publishing communities. It explains blockchain as a concept and then outlines scenarios and examples where blockchain could be used or is already being used in publishing. The article outlines opportunities that blockchain presents for new business models and the areas of revenue distribution, contract, rights, and royalties, and potential improvements it could bring to the supply chain of content via better workflow, sales, production, and collaboration processes.

In: Logos
In: Logos
In: Logos
Author: Hans M. Zell

This is the second instalment of a two-part article. Part 1 of this article appeared in Logos, 30 (3). Part 2 sets out a number of suggestions to strengthen the book industries in Africa, and the way forward, especially on capacity- and skills-building; training for book industry personnel; strengthening book professional associations, South–South linkages, and knowledge-sharing; encouraging international collaboration; the need for ongoing research and documentation; African books in the global marketplace; and the important but still neglected area of publishing in African indigenous languages. An Appendix provides a summary of the International Publishers Association (IPA) and Association for the Development of Education in Africa (ADEA) meetings on the African book industry, held in Nairobi in June 2019, together with links to a number of articles, reports, and press statements about the meetings.

In: Logos

The aim of this paper is to analyse and compare the graphic elements present on book covers published in Croatia from 2012 to 2018, and compare the data with the graphic elements on book covers from five other European book markets. Hofstede’s model of cultural dimensions was used in the research to examine the ways in which the design of book covers is influenced by culture. The graphic elements on book covers from Croatia and a sample of five European countries were compared using the visual content analysis method. Element frequency scores were correlated with indexes from Hofstede’s model of national culture and interpreted on the basis of the existing literature using the chi-squared test. Both the quantitative and qualitative analyses were carried out on the sample of 633 book covers (using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences [SPSS] and a custom-made web application, respectively).

In: Logos