What is publishing's "11-foot 8-inch bridge"?
Earlier today, our intrepid James Sturdivant came across a spellbinding piece of Internet candy about a bridge too short [WATCH THE VIDEO HERE]. The video is a montage, set to the Rocky theme (always appreciated here in Philly), of trucks trying to squeeze beneath a railroad trestle with well-marked 11-feet and 8-inches of clearance. It's allegedly a masterwork of buck-passing: The railroad has installed a "crash beam" to protect its bridge, though the massive beam is also quite adept at ripping the tops off of rented box trucks. The city of Durham, NC, has installed flashing lights to warn overheight trucks. And yet, the website 11foot8.com exists for the sole purpose of documenting the vehicular atrocities.
It's a great watch, especially at the end of your Friday. But what's this got to do with publishing?
It got us thinking: What is publishing's equivalient to Durham, NC's 11-foot, 8-inch bridge? What is the thing we try to make work despite all signs indicating it won't? Is it wholesaling ebooks? Content aggregators? Print-first workflows?
What is your publishing house's 11-foot, 8-inch bridge?
Leave us your answers in the comments section, and we'll publish the best of 'em in a future issue of Publishing Business Today.
Happy Friday, and watch your head.