Today's NYT article is a good look at how the traditional (big 6) book publishing model is quickly unraveling. May I ask that we agree on the following: 'printing' and 'publishing' are not the same thing! 'Publishing' a book, at least in my estimation, includes not only the careful distillation of ideas, but thoughtful design and most importantly the ability of the author to engage and motivate their audience (please - if you have not yet- read Seth Godin's TRIBES).
The other big softball I JUST HAVE TO SWING AT in this article is the bit about trade-offs authors make by forsaking signing a traditional deal:
They do not have the benefit of the marketing acumen of traditional publishers, and have diminished access to the vast bookstore distribution pipeline that big publishers can provide.
Are you kidding me?? You mean like the paying of tolls at turnpikes or blind mailings of bookmarks? Or do you mean the mindless 19th century 'loading of the wagon and carting the goods to market' distribution model? How could anyone give that up?