Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Near-Time Develops Book Building Website

Wiley Technology Publishing and Wrox Press partners with developer Near-Time to generate a wiki-based software that allows books to be viewed in an online publishing platform, reports Publisher's Weekly.

Wiki-based software allows publishers to post interconnected content permitting users multiple levels of access to the text itself, along with other digital functionality.

“Publishers want to extend the e-book format,” Near-Time’s Joel Bush said. “Our technology offers publishers the ability to get consumer feedback, add rich media, create an online community or even make a book available online while it is still being edited.” Bush noted that the software lets publishers revive interest in backlist titles and easily promote new titles. Near-Time’s software also allows publishers to offer content free or through subscription access or to support the text with advertising.

I think it's kind of like Google Book Search only that it publishes books while they are still in the process of being completed. Somebody's still writing the book and it's already available online, kind of like a soap opera on television where you can await the next chapter. In itself, this concept I think holds a lot of promise and peril for authors. This will help authors be motivated if they know someone is already interested in their work. But it can also be a haven for plagiarism and content piracy issues.

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