First, an explanation of the challenge and promise of this system from Adam Hodgkin of Exact Editions, with some images showing what they’ve had to do to cope with our complex multi-volume indexing, at “Exact Editions for Book Publishers.”
Berkshire Publishing is a young and highly innovative publisher of academic and general reference titles (Berkshire MA not UK). They have produced a list of outstanding and ambitious multi-volume reference works in the last decade. We are pleased to be helping promote these great resources in a web environment. The entire books are available and searchable for a limited period through this promotional service. A typically bold move from Berkshire’s CEO, Karen Christensen. Her decision makes me wonder why publishers do not as a matter of course make their new titles available for free for a limited period through the web? Surely there is no better way of promoting a title? Opening access for a limited period makes complete sense. Complete commercial sense if the aim is to sell more books.
From Peter Suber at Open Access News:
I don’t normally blog promotional offers of temporary free access. But this is the first time I’ve seen that strategy used for books, as opposed to journals, and . . . I’d like to see more book publishers try this, in part to help authors and readers, even briefly, and in part to test the waters of OA publishing. Publishers who worry that an OA edition will reduce net sales can always switch the digital edition from open to closed after an initial promotional period.
From Eoin Purcell’s Blog:
The service looks great and I think the control it offers publishers is an enormous plus in its favour. You should go spend a little time checking it out.
To do so, visit Berkshire Publishing at Exact Editions.