Essential numbers to give a clearer picture
Last week, on his blog La Feuille, L’édition à l’heure de l’innovation [The written page – publishing in today’s era of innovation] (part of Le Monde.fr), Hubert Guillaud discussed platform transparency, a topic that’s very important to developing the digital publishing market. Picking up the thread of Baldur Bjarnason’s piece Ebook publishing platforms are a joke, Guillaud also decries the current lack of transparency. The title of his post, e-commerce : les plateformes de publications de livre électroniques sont des canulars [e-commerce: ebook publication platforms are a hoax], sets the overall tone.
We’re talking about publication as well as distribution and sales platforms… and we’re also talking about transparency, i.e., how platforms should be set up so their users can view all of the statistics produced: accurate information on sales, of course, but much more than that as well.
I believe that every platform should help make the market easier to track, rather than more opaque — i.e., rendering it “readable and comprehensible”, so users are able to learn — all the more so within the context of an emerging new market, where the reflexes of old are no longer useful and benchmarks are disappearing.