Copyright Clearance Center and Ixxus co-hosted a panel discussion, “Small Steps, Giant Leaps: The Digital Transformation Experience” at The London Book Fair on April 11, 2018. The panel, moderated by Copyright Clearance Center’s Christopher Kenneally, shared stories of innovation in publishing marked by changes in workflow and production as well as in markets and customer habits.
The panel included: Tom Morris, CTO and Co-Founder, Ixxus; John Newton, CTO and Founder, Alfresco; Kiren Shoman, Editorial Director, SAGE London; Kathryn Earle, Managing Director, Digital Resources Division, Bloomsbury Publishing Plc; and Dr Junaid Mubeen, Director of Education at Whizz Education.
Christopher Kenneally: …In the early days, it was content was king. That went away for a while. It’s coming back. And I think that’s important for a publishing audience to hear, because I’m sure they wonder about the value of their content. Tell us about that.
John Newton: Yeah, I can’t really say that content has ever gone away. You know, just the total volume of content goes up with the total capacity of storage on the planet right now, which continues to grow exponentially. What’s happening, though, is that that content is getting richer, has greater context, and is just more involved in more processes. So basically, where once upon a time we had created software to manage millions of pieces of content back when we started Documentum in 1990, now you can’t even find anything on your laptop, right? Your laptop is a mess. You can’t find anything. That’s true for any consumer of your products trying to find information. You’re there in a morass of content that’s out there, and context is as much – maybe is the queen to content as the king.
Kiren Shoman: …I think at the end of the day, it’s about really remembering who it is that you’re publishing for. I totally would echo that whole notion of content is king but context is queen. I love that, because I think that it’s true. Ultimately, we need to be always cognizant of who is it that wants the material regardless of how we’re sending it out to you – so the challenge of discovery and of finding, but also making sure that we are pushing out there really matters. So thinking about who is the learner and how do they learn? Who is the reader and, if not reader, the watcher and viewer? In terms of us launching SAGE Video, it’s in response to an acknowledgment that students and faculty wanted video alongside textbooks as a part of the whole learning endeavor.