Siapakah dimasa kini yang punya waktu luang yang sangat sempit? Mungkin para pensiunan dan para asyakar yang tak berguna saja yang sehari-harinya antar jemput istri dan para cucu saja. Selebihnya adalah manusia-manusia yang serba sibuk untuk dapat sejenak membaca sebuah buku.
Melihat peluang bisnis ini, maka sebuah Penerbit FT Press, anak perusahaan Pearson, menerbitkan eBook yang dinamakan Elements dan Shorts, yang merupakan ringkasan buku-buku yang tebal, dengan harga dibawah US2.99 yang dapat dibaca melalui perangkat Kindle dan dapat di-download dari toko buku online seperti Amazon.com dan Barnes & Noble.
Elements dijual seharga US$1.99 yang berisikan ringkasan buku 1.000 sampai 2.000 kata dari buku-buku yang telah diterbitkan, sedangkan Shorts djual seharga US$2.99 berisikan ringkasan sebanyak 5.000 kata.
Berikut ini adalah berita lengkapnya:
Who has time to read a whole book anymore?
The FT Press, a unit of Pearson, has introduced two series of short, digital-only titles for professionals who want quick snippets of advice for $2.99 or less.
The publisher, through a new imprint named FT Press Delivers, has quietly begun selling what it is calling Elements and Shorts through the Kindle electronic bookstore onAmazon.com and Barnes & Noble’s e-bookstore. The Elements, which the publisher has priced at $1.99, are stripped-down, 1,000- to 2,000-word versions of already-published books, while the Shorts are newly written essays of about 5,000 words, priced at $2.99.
Titles include “Reengineering the Rules of Management,” by James Champy, the co-author, with Michael Hammer, of “Reengineering the Corporation,” one of the biggest business best sellers of the 1990s, and “Keeping It Honest, From Kitchen to Coca-Cola,” by Seth Goldman, co-founder and chief of Honest Tea, the maker of organic drinks.
Amazon.com is already discounting the prices of the Shorts to $2.39 and the Elements to $1.59. So far, Barnes & Noble has kept the publisher’s pricing.
“It’s a good idea to be able to provide people with shorter, more expedient, more time-sensitive” content, said Timothy C. Moore, publisher of the FT Press.
Mr. Moore said the company had already published 242 titles and planned to have 500 by the end of the year. For the Shorts, the company is working with New Word City, a digital publisher. Mr. Moore acknowledged that sales of the new short-form titles could cannibalize traditional book sales. But, he said, “other sources of information that aren’t books are already causing upheaval” in the book market.
Mr. Champy, a consultant, said demand for longer books had fallen. “There are people who only want to access pieces of what you write,” he said. “I don’t think they have an appetite for reading a long, serious business book.”
According to Mr. Goldman, FT Press is not paying advances to authors and is offering royalties equivalent to 20 percent of the publisher’s net proceeds from each sale. Mr. Moore declined to comment, saying that such details were proprietary.
Mr. Goldman said he hoped the new mini e-books were priced cheaply enough to lure readers. “There is size and substance to it, but it’s not a full meal,” Mr. Goldman said. “It’s a healthy lunch on the go as opposed to the seven-course meal.” MOTOKO RICH (NYT)