In his 2-part look at libraries as publishers, Phill Jones from The Scholarly Kitchen, examines the history of libraries as publishers but also their possible future.
In part one, he examines the start of library publishing programs. Many, he points out, “were partly motivated by a desire to disrupt subscription publishing and a feeling that digital publishing ought to be cheaper and faster than traditional print.” Those libraries quickly learned that digital was just as costly.
Jones points out that the higher cost lead libraries to collaborative relationships with university presses, learned societies, and small print-only journals. For many this has been an highly successful relationship.
In part two, Jones talks about still having hope that libraries as publishers can disrupt the existing publishing industry. He points to the idea of data sharing and data repositories as ways that libraries can go beyond the traditional and couple it with something publishers aren’t offering.
The future of libraries as publishers certainly has yet to be written. What do you see? What do you want?
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