Gutenburg printing press
Gutenberg printing press at Frankfurt Book Fair 2011

When Gutenberg invented the printing press, there was a publishing revolution in the Industrial Age. There were changes in the format of books: from handwritten to machine printed; changes in distribution: as a much greater number of copies were available to the public; and changes in publishing: where multiple newspapers and pulp fiction magazines were founded.

Now in the Digital Age, especially within the last few years, the publishing industry has been revolutionized again. The format of books has changed from print to digital, the distribution has moved from bookstores to include online channels, and publishers are adapting their business models to include e-publishing and many more digital publishers are being founded.

The video below was created as part of a project for the Master of Arts in Communications and Technology program offered by the University of Alberta. The video style was inspired by Erik Qualman’s videos on social media and some of the narrative structure was based on ideas in Nancy Baym’s book “Personal Connections in the Digital Age”.

Video: The Publishing Revolution of the Digital Age

Creative Commons LicenseThe Publishing Revolution of the Digital Age by Nicole Basaraba is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.Based on a work at beyond the scope of this license may be available at

References/sources in order of appearance


What do you think of my interpretation of how the changes in publishing in the digital age have changed society? Is there anything you would add?

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2 thoughts on “The Publishing Revolution of the Digital Age”

  1. Cool video, Nicole. I have to wonder though, if highlighting the more panic-focused posts online really give a true sense of what is happening in the publishing industry. Granted, there is a lot to panic over, but there is also a lot of good news… about standard fare really save that bad news often gets more press.

    1. Hi Eden,

      Thanks for commenting. The “moral panic” I mention is a topic we learned about in class. I think it most definitely applies to the reaction that the industry has had in regards to e-book publishing. I don’t see it necessarily as negative, but as a “panic” in reaction to a big change. In the “What’s next” part of the video I touch on some more of the “positive” aspects in an attempt to give a brief overview of the digital revolution of e-publishing.

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