Makinson: direct to consumer model does not work

Makinson: direct to consumer model does not work

<p>Penguin chief executive John Makinson has said authors will still need publishers in the digital age, with attempts to bypass the intermediary likely to fail. Talking with the Guardian, following the release of Penguin&#39;s first-half results earlier this week, Makinson said: &quot;I am not aware of any successful direct to consumer publishing model that exists.&quot;<br /><br />He tells the newspaper: &quot;The reason it doesn&#39;t work is that the publishers do actually perform quite a useful service: they edit the book, then they publicise it.&quot; In the physical world, they make sure it is stocked in bookshops, he adds.<br /><br />The piece also talks about Makinson&#39;s experiences as an independent bookseller. According to the Guardian, five years ago, he and his brother bought a bookshop in the small Norfolk town of Holt. For an out-of-the-way independent, the Holt Bookshop attracts a starry line-up of authors for events, including Stephen Fry, due to talk about his new autobiography, which, perhaps not surprisingly, is published by Penguin.<br /><br />&quot;We are all terribly sentimental about books,&quot; Makinson says. &quot;It is terribly important to me that we sell lots of wonderful books in my little independent in Norfolk, and when I talk about digital I do sometimes worry that it looks as though I am neglecting all this,&quot; he points to the books on the shelves behind him, &quot;which I am not.&quot;</p>