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Re: Hathi Orphans?
- To: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Subject: Re: Hathi Orphans?
- From: Sandy Thatcher <email@example.com>
- Date: Fri, 28 Oct 2011 20:30:25 EDT
- Reply-to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Sender: email@example.com
How you leap to that conclusion from what i said baffles me, Jean-Claude. What I said was that, with limited resources and overworked staff, as a Press director i could hardly ask them to spend time tracking down orphan works when the information gleaned about them would not even generate enough revenue to cover the time spent. Even a non-profit publisher has to earn enough money to stay in business, given whatever level of subsidy the parent university is willing to provide. if the university "values" the search for orphan works highly enough, then you'd think it would provide a higher subsidy to cover the extra staff costs, wouldn't you? Presses take their directives from their university administrators, so if you have a complaint here, you've pointed it in the wrong direction. Would you rather have the staff researching orphan works instead of acquiring, editing, designing, and producing new books? Or do you think there is just an infinite amount of time we all have to devote to everything we might happen to find worth doing? That's just not the world we live in. Sandy '65 P.S. OI presses were concerned simply about "market demands," we wouldn't be publishing half of the stuff we do! At 7:16 PM -0400 10/27/11, <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: >Thank you, David. > >And thank you, Sandy, for expressing so overtly, openly, single- >and simple-mindedly that the quest for returns trumps everything >else in life. > >Sorry, but I believe there are other values in life, especially >when it comes to means of communication among human beings. > >And Joe Esposito has also sweetly (!!!) reminded us that for him >(or at least for publishers as he portrays them), value is >exclusively linked to market demands. In this perspective, the >value of a book is its economic value. Period! > >It is true that print has transformed documents into >merchandise, into goods; that does not mean that other forms of >value are not present. Henry James' novels were sold less and >less as he grew older. By Joe Esposito's criterion, Henry James' >novels were worth nothing or little more than nothing for a >while before coming back to some (moderate) level of >(commercial) value more recently. > >And it demonstrates neatly what happens when publishers are >given the first role in the circulation of texts, and other >types of documents. They tend to judge everything in economic >terms, tend to give primacy to markets, tend to practice market >fundamentalism or fetishism, as if economics were the >fundamental science of humanity. > >Jean-Claude Guedon