[Marxism] advantages of ebooks | Piety on Kierkegaard

David P Á david at miradoiro.com
Tue May 20 21:26:18 MDT 2014

On 21/05/2014 4:37, Ratbag Media wrote:
> It amazes me that so many on the socialist left can't relate to these
> 'advantages' and recognise what that means for our outreach and discourse.

I think a lot of people do. There is a leftist bookshelf torrent with
about 600 books including the Marxist classics, histories about
revolutions, all kinds of stuff. There's a lot of leftist material
available on torrent.

Then there's of course MIA, which is doing an excellent job.

> It seems to me that if the Marxist left embraced ebook publishing keenly it
> has to be a win/win: massively cheaper, even free, editions before a much
> wider audience with the option thereafter of easy pass on in digital form.

This presents us with what Dmitri Kleiner calls the problem of the
m-c-lol model though: how do we make publication a self-sustaining
thing? Sure, old books are already produced, but how can we manage to
make new works accessible to the masses, while managing to sustain the
people writing them in some way?

In many regards it's easier, because the costs of producing an ebook
(though not zero) are somewhat less than those of producing a pBook, or
even getting to the stage at which one can be produced (printed books
have much more complex typesetting for example). But it's also harder to
recover these costs given that many people either can't afford or won't
pay for ebooks, for which I can't of course blame them.


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