A blog post about the increasing liquidity of publishing, atomized into tweets, and recombined back into a blog post. Thus cleverly reinforcing the theme.
For a moment, think about stories as photos. Now, think about Flickr’s photo database. A few billion jpgs.
When you have that many images on a server, obscurity is the default. The “object” is known only to the creator and a handful of people.
Obscurity is the greatest threat to a creator. Forget DRM, copyright, & pirating. For 95% of creators, NOT being seen is their issue.
Uniqueness, the attention-algorithm, is the masterstroke. By gumming enough data points, Flickr can surface great shots for most tags.
But the unsung hero of Flickr is the group. There are groups for everything. From circles-in-squares to Japanese street fashion to Obama.
Increasingly, publishers are to stories what Flickr groups are to photos: niche curators celebrating works that inspire them.
Or illustrator Julia Rothman’s new imprint Book By It’s Cover Press http://bit.ly/E0Osn which focuses solely on artist monographs.
Or @katmeyer’s new venture, Quartet Press. Quench is their first imprint (ie. filter). But more filters (ie. imprints) will follow.
As stories break from their shackles, mighty publishing will take on the liquidity of Flickr groups, rapidly assembling and dissolving.
The roles of publicists, agents, editors, and writers will become fluid. An “imprint” will constantly shift in ownership and focus.
Flickr showed us the changes in publishing. But like the future, the changes were unevenly distributed. They’re catching up.