A new refrain?

I recently read Chris Meadows' assessment of Booklamp, the online face of the Book Genome Project. Meadows has profiled the book-discovery algorithm in the past, and he returned to review what had changed.

Meadows finds two things are missing from the latest version of Booklamp: selection, and humor. The latter reflects development still needed in the matching function, while the former is a byproduct of limited access to content, a problem often faced by startups who want to work with publishers.

One way or another, discovery is a problem publishers pay to solve. In May, Perseus even funded efforts to 'hack' book discovery, ultimately awarding a $10,000 prize to Evoke for a platform that generates "character maps" to compare different works. 

Given the importance of discovery to publishers, it confounds me to hear (again; cf Small Demons) that a service designed to improve discovery struggles to get publishers to join in. Online, the ability to discover content depends on access to content. Maybe 2014 will bring a new refrain.

About Brian O'Leary

Founder and principal of Magellan Media Consulting, Brian O’Leary helps enterprises with media and publishing components capitalize on the power of content. A veteran of more than 30 years in the publishing industry and a prolific content producer himself, Brian leverages the breadth and depth of his experience to deliver innovative content solutions.

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