Joe has some interesting predictions up on his blog. Read them here:
I agree with most of them, but not all I’m afraid. Some of Joe’s predictions are sort of a wish list of a revolutionary mentality instead of a prediction based on fact. For example, paper is now hovering at 70% of all trade books sold, while electronic has flatlined at 19% (the rest is audio and such). So his first prediction that B&N will go away is just wrong.
For those following the B&N stock and the business reports, B&N is stable, following a good business plan of closing some underperforming stores, and opening up new ones. The Nook program needs a refocus, yes, but is still the second largest platform for selling books and ebooks. And they just expanded out of the US. So B&N is pretty solid and not going anywhere. However, their Nook platform and sales wing will change in some fashion in 2014.
And he flat missed the fact that Amazon is moving to Brick and Mortar based stores and will become, in essence, a major book chain selling everything else at the same time. They are hiring now for that move and have been buying land and working out leases for that over the last two years. That is no surprise, but will help paper book sales a great deal.
His prediction about many trade publishers is overblown as well. But he is right about mergers and some shut-downs of book lines. But profit margins are still high with all the major corporations (Thanks mostly to writers giving them everything). The big trade book publishers aren’t going anywhere fast.
His prediction that indie stores need to sell more indie published books is already happening. He’s a little behind there since B&T and Ingrams changed their POD printed policies last April, allowing all brick and mortar stores, including B&N, to order indie-published books without a problem.
The rest of his predictions I agree with, especially the continued war between trade published writers and indie writers and writers needing to stay focused on discoverability as Kris is talking about ever week in her blog at the moment.
We have reached a new stability in publishing. In fact, it’s been pretty stable now for over a year or more. This is the new world, folks. And I hope Joe makes his new hinted-at projects work. That would be great, especially the library one.
Joe has been one of the leaders in a revolution that changed an entire industry, but someone forgot to tell Joe he won the war about a year ago.