Cover Story: Publishers' Outlook 2012: The Industry's Next Bold Move
Howard: How is UCP affected by current trends in libraries, specifically the adoption of e-books and a trend toward demand-based purchasing?
Kiely: The fact that services like ebrary, NetLibrary and others can offer a wide range of books to libraries, and the libraries only purchase them when customers use them, I think that that's a good thing in a lot of ways because it basically helps prove which books are used versus which books are not. But, at the same time, … there has to be a certain amount of serendipity as far as research is concerned. A lot of the researchers we talk to will say that being able to physically scan the shelves for books and find things that you didn't know were there is one of the key aspects of research.
E-books and libraries, especially academic libraries, are something we support and have supported. We've had deals with NetLibrary and ebrary going back to 2000. … For publishers that publish books that are going to be used in courses, it's a concern. For example, if you put a single copy of a book into a library, and that library has unlimited usage of it, as many students as [they] want can access it simultaneously or something like that; if that book was used for courses, the revenue to the publisher will dry up entirely.
Howard: What changes do you anticipate with your flagship, "The Chicago Manual of Style"?
Kiely: The 2003 edition published in print, but it wasn't until 2007 that the electronic edition came out. With the new [print] edition that published in 2011, we published the new version of the online site simultaneously, and we've had an interesting mix of business there as far as bundling and offering specials.