Context not containers

This morning, I am in London to deliver "Context first" as part of a session that opens the annual conference of the Association of Subscription Agents and Intermediaries (ASA).

I am joining Tim Babbitt of Proquest, who will present "Begin with the customer: Context not containers", as well as Timo Hannay of Macmillan, talking about "Publishing without borders".  You'll see that Kevin Sayar of ebrary was also scheduled, but he wound up unable to make the session.

The ASA represents the interests of subscription agents in the information industry supply chain.  Journals, databases and special collections are among their main areas of interest.

Because the ASA is dedicated to improving the dissemination of professional information, it's not surprising that they would pick up on the value of context.  Still, it's encouraging to see Babbitt and Sayar talk about it this way:

"(Users) are seeking answers to specific questions, which makes context the driving force and the container in which the content is to be found, irrelevant."

This isn't the overused argument that "print is dead". Those kinds of forecasts block effective communication.

But planning for dissemination in a single-format is dead.  I've been trying to bury that idea for a couple of years, and it will be fun to spend the morning among friends.

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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