Social Publishing

You’ll hear more about social publishing from me in the future, but this is too fresh to hesitate showing you. Richard Eoin Nash, former publisher of Soft Skull press, has been trying to rally interest for a social publishing start-up called Cursor.

In this interview, he defines “social publishing”:

1) Define “social publishing” in terms the average book reader would understand; no buzzwords, no “organic gurgle of culture”. What is it, and what’s in it for the reader?

For the reader-as-reader, what “social” means is that there’s going to be more information about books, more scope to interact with the books (your own commenting & annotating and reading others’), more scope to interact with the author, more scope to interact with one another. (This latter item, to get semi-techy for a sec, is something that the broad horizontal book social networks—Goodreads, LibraryThing, Shelfari—do well, though, so we’re likely to focus on using their APIs rather than asking people to build their own bookshelves anew.)

“Social” is taking the book and making it much easier to have a conversation with the book and its writer, and have conversations around the book and its writer.

Again, more on this later.