Welcome to AARdvark, a new blog created by the digital rights committee of the AAR.
When our committee was created a few years ago, it became clear quite quickly that the question of 'digital rights' was too much to grapple with. There is no publishing these days that is NOT somehow digital, and everything we touch is impacted by the digital changes wracking the industry. We realized that often we were asked to look into issues that coincided with the contracts committee, or the foreign committee, or the royalties committee. Our role wasn't congealing.
So we switched gears and realized what we needed to do was to try to stay on the cutting edge of what was happening and help educate the membership by bringing information on the changing landscape to the attention of the membership-and we did that by pulling together several very provocative and well-attended panels that have run over the last couple of years, at AAR monthly meetings and at BEA.
And now, appropriately enough, we think its time to take that role into a digital arena. Of course, no question, there is a LOT of information in the media and online about electronic publishing. Arguably, there is too much. What we would like to do with this blog is to call to your attention the writing in the media that we think is worth paying attention to (and we will let you know if we think that's because the POV is particularly RIGHT or WRONG)- and to weigh in on why some issues may have particular impact on our businesses and our clients.
It seems to us that much of the coverage in the media is about how the changes in the industry affect publishers and booksellers, and shockingly little about how it affects authors.
The members of the committee, listed in the right hand column, will be weighing in with their personal opinions on many issues of interest to them; and will be posting links to articles of interest posted elsewhere.
This site cannot accept comments, but we hope AAR members and other interested parties will continue the conversation on Twitter using hashtag #aardvark. And of course, please reach out to any of the committee members with questions, comments, or ideas.
Chair, Digital Rights Committee
AAR Board Member