Thursday, February 21, 2013

6 Topics for the Final Project.

I'm not sure that these will all work together, but these are the areas that interest me the most.

1. I think we should start with a very brief history of print, to set the stage for where we are and where things might go.

2. Academic publishing: open access vs. traditional pay wall models. How is this system working now? Paying attention to the price increases in pay wall academic journals over time compared to inflation, price increases in paper journals and books. There is a university that has stopped carrying ACS's publications because they are just too expensive, so that might be a good example to use if we want specifics.

3. E-readers and their effects on how people read. This could even be broken into dedicated e-readers such as Kindles and other eReading devices like iPads, smartphones, computers, etc. Do people read more or less with e-readers? Do they read differently? In smaller bursts? Different types of books? Some books sell better on eReaders than other types. Why is that?

4. eBooks: how they are marketed, sold, DRM and it's limitations. (Maybe include eBooks and libraries). Include information about ownership (or lack thereof) of eBooks and what this could mean for used books stores, book lending and how people might change their reading habits because of eBooks.

5. Self publishing of eBooks, and how this effects authors and the book market. Amazon offers a self publish service. There is no advance for the authors who use this, but they pay they receive per book can be more than a traditional publisher might pay. Does this change who chooses to author books? What types of books are being self published?

6. How people consume their news. Traditional print newspapers vs. electronic news. If people get their news on online do they get it all from one site? From an agregator? How does that effect what type of news people are reading? If people don't get a local paper, how do they find local news? Do they only get national news? What about commenting on stories? Does that make people more engaged with the news they follow?

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