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Monday, March 5, 2012

Publisher blues

Statistics add to publisher misery

The latest to voice his “blues” about the future of publishing is Henry Rosenbloom, founder of Scribe, and blogger on

Turnover, he says, has dropped dramatically. “The value of bookshop sales, as measured by BookScan, dropped by 17.5% in December last year, compared with the same period in 2010. This already alarming trend was being maintained earlier this year but it has just started to accelerate: in the second week of February 2012, the value of booktrade sales was 22% lower than for the same week a year before; in the third week the value of was down 29%. The first three weeks combined were down by 21.5%.”

Is the shortfall taken up by eBooks? According to him, it is not. “E-books sales have risen significantly throughout this recent period but they’re not even close in value to the loss of turnover from what will soon be called p-book sales.”

Perhaps it is time for publishers to stop subscribing to BookScan ...

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