Publishing

Publishing is the dissemination of literature, music, or information. It is the activity of making information available to the general public. In some cases, authors may be their own publishers, meaning originators and developers of content also provide media to deliver and display the content for the same. Also, the word "publisher" can refer to the individual who leads a publishing company or an imprint or to a person who owns/heads a magazine.

Traditionally, the term refers to the distribution of printed works such as books (the "book trade") and newspapers. With the advent of digital information systems and the Internet, the scope of publishing has expanded to include electronic resources such as the electronic versions of books and periodicals, as well as micropublishing, websites, blogs, video game publishers, and the like.

Publishing includes the following stages of development: acquisition, copy editing, production, printing (and its electronic equivalents), marketing, and distribution.

Publication is also important as a legal concept:

  1. As the process of giving formal notice to the world of a significant intention, for example, to marry or enter bankruptcy
  2. As the essential precondition of being able to claim defamation; that is, the alleged libel must have been published
  3. For copyright purposes, where there is a difference in the protection of published and unpublished works

There are two basic business models in book publishing:

  1. Traditional or commercial publishers: Do not charge authors at all to publish their books, for certain rights to publish the work and paying a royalty on books sold.[1]
  2. Self-publishing: The author has to meet the total expense to get the book published. The author should retain full rights,[2] also known as vanity publishing.
The Caxton Celebration - William Caxton showing specimens of his printing to King Edward IV and his Queen
Printer working an early Gutenberg letterpress from the 15th century. (engraving date unknown)

History

Publishing became possible with the invention of writing, and became more practical upon the introduction of printing. Prior to printing, distributed works were copied manually, by scribes. Due to printing, publishing progressed hand-in-hand with the development of books.

The Chinese inventor Bi Sheng made movable type of earthenware circa 1045, but there are no known surviving examples of his printing. Around 1450, in what is commonly regarded as an independent invention, Johannes Gutenberg invented movable type in Europe, along with innovations in casting the type based on a matrix and hand mould. This invention gradually made books less expensive to produce, and more widely available.

Early printed books, single sheets and images which were created before 1501 in Europe are known as incunables or incunabula. "A man born in 1453, the year of the fall of Constantinople, could look back from his fiftieth year on a lifetime in which about eight million books had been printed, more perhaps than all the scribes of Europe had produced since Constantine founded his city in A.D. 330."[3]

Eventually, printing enabled other forms of publishing besides books. The history of modern newspaper publishing started in Germany in 1609, with publishing of magazines following in 1663.

Historically, publishing has been handled by publishers, with the history of self-publishing progressing slowly until the advent of computers brought us electronic publishing, which has been made evermore ubiquitous from the moment the world went online with the Internet. The establishment of the World Wide Web in 1989 soon propelled the website into a dominant medium of publishing, as websites are easily created by almost anyone with Internet access. The history of wikis started shortly thereafter, followed closely by the history of blogging. Commercial publishing also progressed, as previously printed forms developed into online forms of publishing, distributing online books, online newspapers, and online magazines.

Since its start, the World Wide Web has been facilitating the technological convergence of commercial and self-published content, as well as the convergence of publishing and producing into online production through the development of multimedia content.

The process of publishing

Book and magazine publishers spend a lot of their time buying or commissioning copy; newspaper publishers, by contrast, usually hire their staff to produce copy, although they may also employ freelance journalists, called stringers. At a small press, it is possible to survive by relying entirely on commissioned material. But as activity increases, the need for works may outstrip the publisher's established circle of writers.

For works written independently of the publisher, writers often first submit a query letter or proposal directly to a literary agent or to a publisher. Submissions sent directly to a publisher are referred to as unsolicited submissions, and the majority come from previously unpublished authors. If the publisher accepts unsolicited manuscripts, then the manuscript is placed in the slush pile, which publisher's readers sift through to identify manuscripts of sufficient quality or revenue potential to be referred to acquisitions editors for review. The acquisitions editors send their choices to the editorial staff. The time and number of people involved in the process are dependent on the size of the publishing company, with larger companies having more degrees of assessment between unsolicited submission and publication. Unsolicited submissions have a very low rate of acceptance, with some sources estimating that publishers ultimately choose about three out of every ten thousand unsolicited manuscripts they receive.[4]

Many book publishers around the world maintain a strict "no unsolicited submissions" policy and will only accept submissions via a literary agent. This policy shifts the burden of assessing and developing writers out of the publisher and onto the literary agents. At these publishers, unsolicited manuscripts are thrown out, or sometimes returned, if the author has provided pre-paid postage.

Established authors may be represented by a literary agent to market their work to publishers and negotiate contracts. Literary agents take a percentage of author earnings (varying between 10 and 15 percent) to pay for their services.

Some writers follow a non-standard route to publication. For example, this may include bloggers who have attracted large readerships producing a book based on their websites, books based on Internet memes, instant "celebrities" such as Joe the Plumber, retiring sports figures and in general anyone a publisher feels could produce a marketable book. Such books often employ the services of a ghostwriter.

For a submission to reach publication, it must be championed by an editor or publisher who must work to convince other staff of the need to publish a particular title. An editor who discovers or champions a book that subsequently becomes a best-seller may find their reputation enhanced as a result of their success.

Acceptance and negotiation

Once a work is accepted, commissioning editors negotiate the purchase of intellectual property rights and agree on royalty rates.

The authors of traditional printed materials typically sell exclusive territorial intellectual property rights that match the list of countries in which distribution is proposed (i.e. the rights match the legal systems under which copyright protections can be enforced). In the case of books, the publisher and writer must also agree on the intended formats of publication —mass-market paperback, "trade" paperback and hardback are the most common options.

The situation is slightly more complex if electronic formatting is to be used. Where distribution is to be by CD-ROM or other physical media, there is no reason to treat this form differently from a paper format, and national copyright is an acceptable approach. But the possibility of Internet download without the ability to restrict physical distribution within national boundaries presents legal problems that are usually solved by selling language or translation rights rather than national rights. Thus, Internet access across the European Union is relatively open because of the laws forbidding discrimination based on nationality, but the fact of publication in, say, France, limits the target market to those who read French.

Having agreed on the scope of the publication and the formats, the parties in a book agreement must then agree on royalty rates, the percentage of the gross retail price that will be paid to the author, and the advance payment. The publisher must estimate the potential sales in each market and balance projected revenue against production costs. Royalties usually range between 10–12% of recommended retail price. An advance is usually 1/3 of the first print run total royalties. For example, if a book has a print run of 5000 copies and will be sold at $14.95 and the author is to receive 10% royalties, the total sum payable to the author if all copies are sold is $7475 (10% x $14.95 x 5000). The advance in this instance would roughly be $2490. Advances vary greatly between books, with established authors commanding larger advances.

Pre-production stages

Although listed as distinct stages, parts of these occur concurrently. As editing of text progresses, front cover design and initial layout takes place, and sales and marketing of the book begins.

Editorial stage

A decision is taken to publish a work, and the technical legal issues resolved, the author may be asked to improve the quality of the work through rewriting or smaller changes and the staff will edit the work. Publishers may maintain a house style, and staff will copy edit to ensure that the work matches the style and grammatical requirements of each market. Editors often choose or refine titles and headlines. Editing may also involve structural changes and requests for more information. Some publishers employ fact checkers, particularly regarding non-fiction works.

Design stage

When a final text is agreed upon, the next phase is design. This may include artwork being commissioned or confirmation of layout. In publishing, the word "art" also indicates photographs. Depending on the number of photographs required by the work, photographs may also be licensed from photo libraries. For those works that are particularly rich in illustrations, the publisher may contract a picture researcher to find and license the photographs required for the work. The design process prepares the work for printing through processes such as typesetting, dust jacket composition, specification of paper quality, binding method and casing.

The type of book being produced determines the amount of design required. For standard fiction titles, the design is usually restricted to typography and cover design. For books containing illustrations or images, design takes on a much larger role in laying out how the page looks, how chapters begin and end, colours, typography, cover design and ancillary materials such as posters, catalogue images, and other sales materials. Non-fiction illustrated titles are the most design intensive books, requiring extensive use of images and illustrations, captions, typography and a deep involvement and consideration of the reader experience.

The activities of typesetting, page layout, the production of negatives, plates from the negatives and, for hardbacks, the preparation of brasses for the spine legend and Imprint are now all computerized. Prepress computerization evolved mainly in about the last twenty years of the 20th century. If the work is to be distributed electronically, the final files are saved in formats appropriate to the target operating systems of the hardware used for reading. These may include PDF files.

Sales and marketing stage

The sales and marketing stage is closely intertwined with the editorial process. As front cover images are produced, or chapters are edited, sales people may start talking about the book with their customers to build early interest. Publishing companies often produce advanced information sheets that may be sent to customers or overseas publishers to gauge possible sales. As early interest is measured, this information feeds back through the editorial process and may affect the formatting of the book and the strategy employed to sell it. For example, if interest from foreign publishers is high, co-publishing deals may be established whereby publishers share printing costs in producing large print runs thereby lowering the per-unit cost of the books. Conversely, if initial feedback is not strong, the print-run of the book may be reduced, the marketing budget cut or, in some cases, the book is dropped from publication altogether.

Printing

After the end of editing and design work, the printing phase begins. The first step involves the production of a pre-press proof, which the printers send for final checking and sign-off by the publisher. This proof shows the book precisely as it will appear once printed and represents the final opportunity for the publisher to find and correct any errors. Some printing companies use electronic proofs rather than printed proofs. Once the publisher has approved the proofs, printing – the physical production of the printed work – begins.

Recently new printing process have emerged, such as printing on demand (POD) and web-to-print. The book is written, edited, and designed as usual, but it is not printed until the publisher receives an order for the book from a customer. This procedure ensures low costs for storage and reduces the likelihood of printing more books than will be sold. Web-to-print enables a more streamlined way of connecting customers to printing through an online medium.

Binding

In the case of books, binding follows upon the printing process. It involves folding the printed sheets, "securing them together, affixing boards or sides to it, and covering the whole with leather or other materials".[5]

Distribution

The final stage in publication involves making the product available to the public, usually by offering it for sale. In previous centuries, authors frequently also acted as their own editor, printer, and bookseller, but these functions have become separated. Once a book, newspaper, or another publication is printed, the publisher may use a variety of channels to distribute it. Books are most commonly sold through booksellers and through other retailers. Newspapers and magazines are typically sold in advance directly by the publisher to subscribers, and then distributed either through the postal system or by newspaper carriers. Periodicals are also frequently sold through newsagents and vending machines.

Within the book industry, printers often fly some copies of the finished book to publishers as sample copies to aid sales or to be sent out for pre-release reviews. The remaining books often travel from the printing facility via sea freight. Accordingly, the delay between the approval of the pre-press proof and the arrival of books in a warehouse, much less in a retail store, can take some months. For books that tie into movie release-dates (particularly for children's films), publishers will arrange books to arrive in store up to two months prior to the movie release to build interest in the movie.

Publishing as a business

Derided in the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica as "a purely commercial affair" that cared more about profits than about literary quality,[6] publishing is fundamentally a business, with a need for the expenses of creating, producing, and distributing a book or other publication not to exceed the income derived from its sale. Publishing is now a major industry with the largest companies Reed Elsevier and Pearson PLC having global publishing operations.

The publisher usually controls the advertising and other marketing tasks, but may subcontract various aspects of the process to specialist publisher marketing agencies. In many companies, editing, proofreading, layout, design, and other aspects of the production process are done by freelancers.[7][8]

Dedicated in-house salespeople are sometimes replaced by companies who specialize in sales to bookshops, wholesalers, and chain stores for a fee. This trend is accelerating as retail book chains and supermarkets have centralized their buying.

If the entire process up to the stage of printing is handled by an outside company or individuals, and then sold to the publishing company, it is known as book packaging. This is a common strategy between smaller publishers in different territorial markets where the company that first buys the intellectual property rights then sells a package to other publishers and gains an immediate return on capital invested. The first publisher will often print sufficient copies for all markets and thereby get the maximum quantity efficiency on the print run for all.

Some businesses maximize their profit margins through vertical integration; book publishing is not one of them. Although newspaper and magazine companies still often own printing presses and binderies, book publishers rarely do. Similarly, the trade usually sells the finished products through a distributor who stores and distributes the publisher's wares for a percentage fee or sells on a sale or return basis.

The advent of the Internet has provided the electronic way of book distribution without the need of physical printing, physical delivery and storage of books. This, therefore, poses an interesting question that challenges publishers, distributors, and retailers. The question pertains to the role and importance the publishing houses have in the overall publishing process. It is a common practice that the author, the original creator of the work, signs the contract awarding him or her only around 10% of the proceeds of the book.[9] Such contract leaves 90% of the book proceeds to the publishing houses, distribution companies, marketers, and retailers. One example (rearranged) of the distribution of proceeds from the sale of a book was given as follows:[10]

  • 45% to the retailer
  • 10% to the wholesaler
  • 10.125% to the publisher for printing (this is usually subcontracted out)
  • 7.15% to the publisher for marketing
  • 12.7% to the publisher for pre-production
  • 15% to the author (royalties)

There is a common misconception that publishing houses make large profits and that authors are the lowest paid in the publishing chain. However, most publishers make little profit from individual titles, with 75% of books not breaking even. Approximately 80% of the cost of a book is taken up by the expenses of preparing, distributing, and printing (with printing being one of the lowest costs of all). On successful titles, publishing companies will usually make around 10% profit, with the author(s) receiving 8–15% of the retail price. However, given that authors are usually individuals, are often paid advances irrespective of whether the book turns a profit and do not normally have to split profits with others, it makes them the highest paid individuals in the publishing process.

Within the electronic book path, the publishing house's role remains almost identical. The process of preparing a book for e-book publication is exactly the same as print publication, with only minor variations in the process to account for the different mediums of publishing. While some costs, such as the discount given to retailers (normally around 45%)[10] are eliminated, additional costs connected to ebooks apply (especially in the conversion process), raising the production costs to a similar level.

Print on demand is rapidly becoming an established alternative to traditional publishing. In 2005, Amazon.com announced its purchase of Booksurge and selfsanepublishing, a major "print on demand" operation. CreateSpace is the Amazon subsidiary that facilitates publishing by small presses and individual authors. Books published via CreateSpace are sold on Amazon and other outlets, with Amazon extracting a very high percentage of the sales proceeds for the services of publishing. printing and distributing. One of the largest bookseller chains, Barnes & Noble, already runs its successful imprint with both new titles and classics — hardback editions of out-of-print former best sellers. Similarly, Ingram Industries, the parent company of Ingram Book Group (a leading US book wholesaler), now includes its print-on-demand division called Lightning Source. In 2013, Ingram launched a small press and self-publishing arm called Ingram Spark.[11] Payment terms are much closer to those of Amazon and less favorable than those they offer to more established publishers via Lightning Source. Among publishers, Simon & Schuster recently announced that it will start selling its backlist titles directly to consumers through its website.

Book clubs are almost entirely direct-to-retail, and niche publishers pursue a mixed strategy to sell through all available outlets — their output is insignificant to the major booksellers, so lost revenue poses no threat to the traditional symbiotic relationships between the four activities of printing, publishing, distribution, and retail.

Industry sub-divisions

Newspaper publishing

Newspapers are regularly scheduled publications that present recent news, typically on a type of inexpensive paper called newsprint. Most newspapers are primarily sold to subscribers, through retail newsstands or are distributed as advertising-supported free newspapers. About one-third of publishers in the United States are newspaper publishers.[12]

Periodical publishing

Nominally, periodical publishing involves publications that appear in a new edition on a regular schedule. Newspapers and magazines are both periodicals, but within the industry, the periodical publishing is frequently considered a separate branch that includes magazines and even academic journals, but not newspapers.[12] About one-third of publishers in the United States publish periodicals (not including newspapers).[12]

Book publishing

The global book publishing industry accounts for over $100 billion of annual revenue, or about 15% of the total media industry.[13]

Book publishers represent less than a sixth of the publishers in the United States.[12] Most books are published by a small number of very large book publishers, but thousands of smaller book publishers exist. Many small- and medium-sized book publishers specialize in a specific area. Additionally, thousands of authors have created publishing companies and self-published their own works.

Within the book publishing, the publisher of record for a book is the entity in whose name the book's ISBN is registered. The publisher of record may or may not be the actual publisher.

Approximately 60%[14] of English-language books are produced through the "Big Five" publishing houses: Penguin Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster and Macmillan. (See also: List of English-language book publishing companies.)

Directory publishing

Directory publishing is a specialized genre within the publishing industry. These publishers produce mailing lists, telephone books, and other types of directories.[12] With the advent of the Internet, many of these directories are now online.

Academic publishing

Academic publishers are typically either book or periodical publishers that have specialized in academic subjects. Some, like university presses, are owned by scholarly institutions. Others are commercial businesses that focus on academic subjects.

The development of the printing press represented a revolution for communicating the latest hypotheses and research results to the academic community and supplemented what a scholar could do personally. But this improvement in the efficiency of communication created a challenge for libraries, which have had to accommodate the weight and volume of literature.

One of the key functions that academic publishers provide is to manage the process of peer review. Their role is to facilitate the impartial assessment of research and this vital role is not one that has yet been usurped, even with the advent of social networking and online document sharing.

Today, publishing academic journals and textbooks is a large part of an international industry. Critics claim that standardised accounting and profit-oriented policies have displaced the publishing ideal of providing access to all. In contrast to the commercial model, there is non-profit publishing, where the publishing organization is either organised specifically for the purpose of publishing, such as a university press, or is one of the functions of an organisation such as a medical charity, founded to achieve specific practical goals. An alternative approach to the corporate model is open access, the online distribution of individual articles and academic journals without charge to readers and libraries. The pioneers of Open Access journals are BioMed Central and the Public Library of Science (PLoS). Many commercial publishers are experimenting with hybrid models where certain articles or government funded articles are made free due to authors' payment of processing charges, and other articles are available as part of a subscription or individual article purchase.

Tie-in publishing

Technically, radio, television, cinemas, VCDs and DVDs, music systems, games, computer hardware and mobile telephony publish information to their audiences. Indeed, the marketing of a major film often includes a novelization, a graphic novel or comic version, the soundtrack album, a game, model, toys and endless promotional publications.

Some of the major publishers have entire divisions devoted to a single franchise, e.g. Ballantine Del Rey Lucasbooks has the exclusive rights to Star Wars in the United States; Random House UK (Bertelsmann)/Century LucasBooks holds the same rights in the United Kingdom. The game industry self-publishes through BL Publishing/Black Library (Warhammer) and Wizards of the Coast (Dragonlance, Forgotten Realms, etc.). The BBC has its publishing division that does very well with long-running series such as Doctor Who. These multimedia works are cross-marketed aggressively and sales frequently outperform the average stand-alone published work, making them a focus of corporate interest.[15]

Independent publishing alternatives

Writers in a specialized field or with a narrower appeal have found smaller alternatives to the mass market in the form of small presses and self-publishing. More recently, these options include print on demand and ebook format. These publishing alternatives provide an avenue for authors who believe that mainstream publishing will not meet their needs or who are in a position to make more money from direct sales than they could from bookstore sales, such as popular speakers who sell books after speeches. Authors are more readily published by this means due to the much lower costs involved.

Recent developments

The 21st century has brought some new technological changes to the publishing industry. These changes include e-books, print on demand, and accessible publishing. E-books have been quickly growing in availability in major publishing markets such as the USA and the UK since 2005. Google, Amazon.com, and Sony have been leaders in working with publishers and libraries to digitize books. As of early 2011, Amazon's Kindle reading device is a significant force in the market, along with the Apple iPad and the Nook from Barnes & Noble. Along with the growing popularity of e-books, some companies like Oyster and Scribd have pursued the subscription model, providing members unlimited access to a content library on a variety of digital reading devices.

The ability to quickly and cost-effectively print on demand has meant that publishers no longer have to store books at warehouses, if the book is in low or unknown demand. This is a huge advantage to small publishers who can now operate without large overheads and large publishers who can now cost-effectively sell their backlisted items.

Accessible publishing uses the digitization of books to mark up books into XML and then produces multiple formats from this to sell to consumers, often targeting those with difficulty reading. Formats include a variety larger print sizes, specialized print formats for dyslexia,[16] eye tracking problems and macular degeneration, as well as Braille, DAISY, audiobooks and e-books.[17]

Green publishing means adapting the publishing process to minimise environmental impact. One example of this is the concept of on-demand printing, using digital or print-on-demand technology. This cuts down the need to ship books since they are manufactured close to the customer on a just-in-time basis.[18]

A further development is the growth of on-line publishing where no physical books are produced. The ebook is created by the author and uploaded to a website from where it can be downloaded and read by anyone.

An increasing number of authors are using niche marketing online to sell more books by engaging with their readers online.[19] These authors can use free services such as Smashwords or Amazon's CreateSpace to have their book available for worldwide sale. There is an obvious attraction for first time authors who have been repeatedly rejected by the existing agent/publisher model to explore this opportunity. However, a consequence of this change in the mechanics of book distribution is that there is now no mandatory check on author skill or even their ability to spell, and any person with an internet connection can publish whatever they choose, regardless of the literary merit or even basic readability of their writing.

Standardization

Refer to the ISO divisions of ICS 01.140.40 and 35.240.30 for further information.[20][21]

Legal issues

Publication is the distribution of copies or content to the public.[22][23] The Berne Convention requires that this can only be done with the consent of the copyright holder, which is initially always the author.[22] In the Universal Copyright Convention, "publication" is defined in article VI as "the reproduction in tangible form and the general distribution to the public of copies of a work from which it can be read or otherwise visually perceived."[23]

In providing a work to the general public, the publisher takes responsibility for the publication in a way that a mere printer or a shopkeeper does not. For example, publishers may face charges of defamation, if they produce and distribute libelous material to the public, even if the libel was written by another person.

Privishing

Privishing (private publishing) is a modern term for publishing a book in such a small amount, or with such lack of marketing, advertising or sales support from the publisher, that the book effectively does not reach the public.[24] The book, while nominally published, is almost impossible to obtain through normal channels such as bookshops, often cannot be special-ordered and will have a notable lack of support from its publisher, including refusals to reprint the title. A book that is privished may be referred to as "killed". Depending on the motivation, privishing may constitute breach of contract, censorship,[25] or good business practice (e.g., not printing more books than the publisher believes will sell in a reasonable length of time).

See also

General:

Publishing on specific contexts:

Publishing tools:

References

Citations

  1. ^ Steven, Daniel. "Self-publishing – In traditional royalty publishing". publishlawyer.com. Daniel N. Steven, LLC. Retrieved 1 March 2018.
  2. ^ Steven, Daniel. "What is self-publishing". publishlawyer.com. Daniel N. Steven, LLC. Retrieved 1 March 2018.
  3. ^ Clapham, Michael, "Printing" in A History of Technology, Vol 2. From the Renaissance to the Industrial Revolution, edd. Charles Singer et al. (Oxford 1957), p. 377. Cited from Elizabeth L. Eisenstein, The Printing Press as an Agent of Change (Cambridge University, 1980).
  4. ^ Tara K. Harper (2004). "On Publishers and Getting Published". Retrieved 28 May 2010.
  5. ^ Hannett, John (2010) [1836]. Bibliopegia: Or the Art of Bookbinding, in All Its Branches. Cambridge Library Collection: Printing and Publishing History (2 ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 3. ISBN 978-1-108-02144-9. Retrieved 19 February 2013. Binding is the art of folding the sheets of a book, securing them together, affixing boards or sides thereto, and covering the whole with leather or other materials
  6. ^ Wikisource Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Publishing" . Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.
  7. ^ "Jobs and Careers – Help". Random House, Inc. Retrieved 13 August 2008.
  8. ^ "Jobs with Penguin". Penguin Books Ltd. Archived from the original on 6 September 2008. Retrieved 13 August 2008.
  9. ^ "Sample Publishing Contract". Indexbooks.net. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  10. ^ a b "Book Cost Analysis – Cost of Physical Book Publishing - Kindle Review – Kindle Phone Review, Kindle Fire HD Review". Kindle Review.
  11. ^ "How to Publish a Book – eBook Publishing". ingramspark.com. Archived from the original on 24 December 2013.
  12. ^ a b c d e Bureau of Labor Statistics (17 December 2009). "Career Guide to Industries, 2010–11 Edition: Publishing, Except Software". U.S. Department of Labor. Retrieved 28 May 2010.
  13. ^ IPA Global. Publishing Statistics (PDF).
  14. ^ Losowsky, Andrew (20 February 2013). "Indie Bookstores File Lawsuit Against Amazon". Huffington Post.
  15. ^ Shelagh Vainker in Anne Farrer (ed.), "Caves of the Thousand Buddhas", 1990, British Museum publications, ISBN 0-7141-1447-2.
  16. ^ Dwight Garner (20 May 2008). "Making Reading Easier – Paper Cuts Blog". NYTimes.com.
  17. ^ "Overview of the Technology- Awards, Cost Savings". Radhowyouwant.com. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  18. ^ Kanter, James (2 December 2008). "Reading Green On Demand". Green blogs, New York Times. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  19. ^ Rinzler, Alan (29 July 2010). "The Magic of Niche Marketing for Authors". Forbes. Retrieved 3 July 2012.
  20. ^ International Organization for Standardization. "01.140.40: Publishing". Retrieved 14 July 2008.
  21. ^ International Organization for Standardization. "35.240.30: IT applications in information, documentation and publishing". Retrieved 14 July 2008.
  22. ^ a b WIPO. "Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works". Wipo.int. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  23. ^ a b "Microsoft Word – The Universal Copyright Convention _Geneva Text—September" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 25 November 2012. Retrieved 19 November 2012.
  24. ^ Winkler, David (11 July 2002). "Journalists Thrown 'Into the Buzzsaw'". CommonDreams.org. Archived from the original on August 4, 2007.
  25. ^ Sue Curry Jansen of Muhlenberg College, Pennsylvania and Brian Martin of University of Wollongong, Australia (July 2003). "Making censorship backfire". Counterpoise. 7.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)

Sources

  • Epstein, Jason. Book Business: Publishing Past, Present, and Future.
  • Schiffrin, André (2000). The Business of Books: How the International Conglomerates Took Over Publishing and Changed the Way We Read.
  • Ugrešić, Dubravka (2003). Thank You for Not Reading.
  • Abelson et al. (2005). Open Networks and Open Society: The Relationship between Freedom, Law, and Technology
  • Leonard Shatzkin (1982). In Cold Type: Overcoming the Book Crisis. Boston, Mass.: Houghton-Mifflin. xiii, 297 pp. ISBN 0-395-32160-3

External links

Activision

Activision Publishing, Inc. is an American video game publisher based in Santa Monica. It currently serves as the publishing business for its parent company, Activision Blizzard, and consists of several subsidiary studios. As of January 2017, Activision is one of the largest third-party video game publishers in the world and was the top publisher for 2016 in the United States.The company was founded as Activision, Inc. in October 1979 in Sunnyvale, California, by former Atari game developers, upset at how they were treated at Atari, to develop their own games for the popular Atari 2600 home video game console. Activision was recognized as the first independent third-party video game developer. The 1983 video game crash, in part created by too many new companies trying to follow in Activison's footsteps without the expertise of Activision's founders, hurt Activision's position in console games, forcing them to diversify into games for home computers, including the acquisition of Infocom. After a management shift, with CEO Jim Levy replaced by Bruce Davis, the company renamed itself as Mediagenic and branched out into business software applications. Mediagenic quickly fell into debt, and the company was bought for around US$500,000 by Bobby Kotick and a small group of investors around 1991.

Kotick instituted a full rework of the company to cover its debts, dismissing most of its staff, and moving the company to Los Angeles, reincorporated under the Activision name. Building on existing assets, the Kotick-led Activision pursued more publishing opportunities, and after recovering from the former debt, started acquiring numerous studies and intellectual properties over the 1990s and 2000s, among these being the Call of Duty and Guitar Hero series. Activision Holdings was formed to manage the internal and acquires studios. In 2008, Activision's parent merged with Vivendi Games, the parent company of Blizzard Entertainment, and formed Activision Blizzard, with Kotick as its CEO. Within this structure, Activision serves to manage numerous third-party studios and publish all of the parent company's games outside of those created by Blizzard.

Amazon (company)

Amazon.com, Inc. (), is a Seattle, Washington-based, multinational technology company focusing in e-commerce, cloud computing, and artificial intelligence.

Amazon is the largest e-commerce marketplace and cloud computing platform in the world as measured by revenue and market capitalization. Amazon.com was founded by Jeff Bezos on July 5, 1994, and started as an online bookstore but later diversified to sell video downloads/streaming, MP3 downloads/streaming, audiobook downloads/streaming, software, video games, electronics, apparel, furniture, food, toys, and jewelry. The company also owns a publishing arm, Amazon Publishing, a film and television studio, Amazon Studios, produces consumer electronics lines including Kindle e-readers, Fire tablets, Fire TV, and Echo devices, and is the world's largest provider of cloud infrastructure services (IaaS and PaaS) through its AWS subsidiary. Amazon has separate retail websites for some countries and also offers international shipping of some of its products to certain other countries. 100 million people subscribe to Amazon Prime.Amazon is the largest Internet company by revenue in the world and the second largest employer in the United States. In 2015, Amazon surpassed Walmart as the most valuable retailer in the United States by market capitalization. In 2017, Amazon acquired Whole Foods Market for $13.4 billion, which vastly increased Amazon's presence as a brick-and-mortar retailer. The acquisition was interpreted by some as a direct attempt to challenge Walmart's traditional retail stores.

Bahá'í Faith

The Bahá'í Faith (; Persian: بهائی‎ Bahā'i) is a religion teaching the essential worth of all religions, and the unity and equality of all people. Established by Bahá'u'lláh in 1863, it initially grew in Iran and parts of the Middle East, where it has faced ongoing persecution since its inception. It is estimated to have between 5 and 8 million adherents, known as Bahá'ís, spread out into most of the world's countries and territories.It grew from the mid-19th-century Bábí religion, whose founder (the Báb) taught that God would soon send a prophet in the same way of Jesus or Muhammad. In 1863, after being banished from his native Iran, Bahá'u'lláh (1817–1892) announced that he was this prophet. He was further exiled, spending over a decade in the prison city of Akka in Ottoman Palestine. Following Bahá'u'lláh's death in 1892, leadership of the religion fell to his son `Abdu'l-Bahá (1844–1921), and later his great-grandson Shoghi Effendi (1897–1957). Bahá'ís around the world annually elect local, regional, and national Spiritual Assemblies that govern the affairs of the religion, and every five years the members of all National Spiritual Assemblies elect the Universal House of Justice, the nine-member supreme governing institution of the worldwide Bahá'í community, which sits in Haifa, Israel, near the Shrine of the Báb.

Bahá'í teachings are in some ways similar to other monotheistic faiths: God is considered single and all-powerful. However, Bahá'u'lláh taught that religion is orderly and progressively revealed by one God through Manifestations of God who are the founders of major world religions throughout history; Buddha, Jesus, and Muhammad being the most recent in the period before the Báb and Bahá'u'lláh. Bahá'ís regard the major religions as fundamentally unified in purpose, though varied in social practices and interpretations. There is a similar emphasis on the unity of all people, openly rejecting notions of racism and nationalism. At the heart of Bahá'í teachings is the goal of a unified world order that ensures the prosperity of all nations, races, creeds, and classes.Letters written by Bahá'u'lláh to various individuals, including some heads of state, have been collected and assembled into a canon of Bahá'í scripture that includes works by his son `Abdu'l-Bahá, and also the Báb, who is regarded as Bahá'u'lláh's forerunner. Prominent among Bahá'í literature are the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, Kitáb-i-Íqán, Some Answered Questions, and The Dawn-Breakers.

Billboard (magazine)

Billboard is an American entertainment media brand owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a division of Eldridge Industries. It publishes pieces involving news, video, opinion, reviews, events, and style, and is also known for its music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres. It also hosts events, owns a publishing firm, and operates several TV shows.

Billboard was founded in 1894 by William Donaldson and James Hennegan as a trade publication for bill posters. Donaldson later acquired Hennegen's interest in 1900 for $500. In the early years of the 20th century, it covered the entertainment industry, such as circuses, fairs, and burlesque shows, and also created a mail service for travelling entertainers. Billboard began focusing more on the music industry as the jukebox, phonograph, and radio became commonplace. Many topics it covered were spun-off into different magazines, including Amusement Business in 1961 to cover outdoor entertainment, so that it could focus on music. After Donaldson died in 1925, Billboard was passed down to his children and Hennegan's children, until it was sold to private investors in 1985, and has since been owned by various parties.

Condé Nast

Condé Nast Inc. is an American mass media company founded in 1909 by Condé Montrose Nast, based at One World Trade Center and owned by Advance Publications.The company attracts more than 164 million consumers across its 19 brands and media: Allure, Architectural Digest, Ars Technica, Backchannel, Bon Appétit, Brides, Condé Nast Traveler, Epicurious, Glamour, Golf Digest, GQ, Pitchfork, Self, Teen Vogue, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Vogue, W and Wired.

Robert A. Sauerberg Jr. is Condé Nast's current chief executive officer and president. US Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour serves as the current artistic director of Condé Nast. The company launched Condé Nast Entertainment in 2011 to develop film, television and digital video programming.

DC Comics

DC Comics, Inc. is an American comic book publisher. It is the publishing unit of DC Entertainment, a subsidiary of Warner Bros. since 1967. DC Comics is one of the largest and oldest American comic book companies, and produces material featuring numerous culturally iconic heroic characters including: Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, The Flash, Green Lantern, Martian Manhunter, Nightwing, Green Arrow, Aquaman, Hawkman, Cyborg and Supergirl.

Most of their material takes place in the fictional DC Universe, which also features teams such as the Justice League, the Justice Society of America, the Suicide Squad, and the Teen Titans, and well-known villains such as The Joker, Lex Luthor, Catwoman, Darkseid, Sinestro, Brainiac, Black Adam, Ra's al Ghul and Deathstroke. The company has also published non-DC Universe-related material, including Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and many titles under their alternative imprint Vertigo.

The initials "DC" came from the company's popular series Detective Comics, which featured Batman's debut and subsequently became part of the company's name. Originally in Manhattan at 432 Fourth Avenue, the DC Comics offices have been located at 480 and later 575 Lexington Avenue; 909 Third Avenue; 75 Rockefeller Plaza; 666 Fifth Avenue; and 1325 Avenue of the Americas. DC had its headquarters at 1700 Broadway, Midtown Manhattan, New York City, but it was announced in October 2013 that DC Entertainment would relocate its headquarters from New York to Burbank, California in April 2015.Random House distributes DC Comics' books to the bookstore market, while Diamond Comic Distributors supplies the comics shop specialty market. DC Comics and its longtime major competitor Marvel Comics (acquired in 2009 by The Walt Disney Company, WarnerMedia's main competitor) together shared approximately 70% of the American comic book market in 2017.

Dark Horse Comics

Dark Horse Comics is an American comic book and manga publisher. It was founded in 1986 by Mike Richardson in Milwaukie, Oregon.

Richardson started out by opening his first comic book store, Pegasus Books, in Bend, Oregon, in 1980. From there he was able to use the funds from his retail operation to start his own publishing company. Dark Horse Presents and Boris the Bear were the two initial titles in 1986 and within one year of its first publication, Dark Horse Comics added nine new titles to its roster, including Hellboy, The American, The Mask, Trekker, and Black Cross. Frank Miller's Sin City is one of the most famous works associated with Dark Horse, and it has become something of a signature comic to the publishing house. They also established a reputation for publishing licensed works such as Aliens, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Conan, and Star Wars.

In 2011, Dark Horse Presents relaunched including the return of Paul Chadwick's Concrete and Steve Niles' Criminal Macabre, as well as new talent including Sanford Greene, Carla Speed McNeil, Nate Crosby and others. In late summer of 2018 a set of comic books for Mysticons were released.

Digital object identifier

In computing, a Digital Object Identifier or DOI is a persistent identifier or handle used to uniquely identify objects, standardized by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). An implementation of the Handle System, DOIs are in wide use mainly to identify academic, professional, and government information, such as journal articles, research reports and data sets, and official publications though they also have been used to identify other types of information resources, such as commercial videos.

A DOI aims to be "resolvable", usually to some form of access to the information object to which the DOI refers. This is achieved by binding the DOI to metadata about the object, such as a URL, indicating where the object can be found. Thus, by being actionable and interoperable, a DOI differs from identifiers such as ISBNs and ISRCs which aim only to uniquely identify their referents. The DOI system uses the indecs Content Model for representing metadata.

The DOI for a document remains fixed over the lifetime of the document, whereas its location and other metadata may change. Referring to an online document by its DOI is supposed to provide a more stable link than simply using its URL. But every time a URL changes, the publisher has to update the metadata for the DOI to link to the new URL. It is the publisher's responsibility to update the DOI database. If they fail to do so, the DOI resolves to a dead link leaving the DOI useless.

The developer and administrator of the DOI system is the International DOI Foundation (IDF), which introduced it in 2000. Organizations that meet the contractual obligations of the DOI system and are willing to pay to become a member of the system can assign DOIs. The DOI system is implemented through a federation of registration agencies coordinated by the IDF. By late April 2011 more than 50 million DOI names had been assigned by some 4,000 organizations, and by April 2013 this number had grown to 85 million DOI names assigned through 9,500 organizations.

EMI

EMI Group Limited (originally an initialism for Electric and Musical Industries, also referred to as EMI Records Ltd. or simply EMI) was a British Transnational conglomerate founded in March 1931 in London. At the time of its break-up in 2012, it was the fourth largest business group and record label conglomerate in the music industry, and was one of the big four record companies (now the big three); its labels included EMI Records, Parlophone, Virgin Records, and Capitol Records, which are now owned by other companies.

The company was once a constituent of the FTSE 100 Index, but faced financial troubles and US$4 billion in debt, leading to its acquisition by Citigroup in February 2011. Citigroup's ownership was temporary, as EMI announced in November 2011 that it would sell its music arm to Vivendi's Universal Music Group for $1.9 billion and its publishing business to a Sony/ATV consortium for around $2.2 billion. Other members of the Sony consortium include the Estate of Michael Jackson, The Blackstone Group, and the Abu Dhabi–owned Mubadala Development Company. EMI's locations in the United Kingdom, the United States, and Canada were all disassembled to repay debt, but the primary head office located outside those countries is still functional.It is currently owned by Sony/ATV Music Publishing, the music publishing division of Sony Music which bought another 70% stake in EMI Music Publishing.

Elsevier

Elsevier (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈɛlzəviːr]) is a Dutch information and analytics company and one of the world's major providers of scientific, technical, and medical information. It was established in 1880 as a publishing company. It is a part of the RELX Group, known until 2015 as Reed Elsevier. Its products include journals such as The Lancet and Cell, the ScienceDirect collection of electronic journals, the Trends and Current Opinion series of journals, the online citation database Scopus, and the ClinicalKey solution for clinicians. Elsevier's products and services include the entire academic research lifecycle, including software and data-management, instruction and assessment tools.Elsevier publishes more than 430,000 articles annually in 2,500 journals. Its archives contain over 13 million documents and 30,000 e-books. Total yearly downloads amount to more than 900 million.Elsevier's high operating profit margins (37% in 2017) and its copyright practices have subjected it to criticism by researchers.

Episcopal Church (United States)

The Episcopal Church (TEC) is a member church of the worldwide Anglican Communion based in the United States with dioceses elsewhere. It is a mainline Christian denomination divided into nine provinces. The presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church is Michael Bruce Curry, the first African-American bishop to serve in that position.

In 2017, the Episcopal Church had 1,905,349 baptized members, of whom 1,745,156 were in the United States. In 2011, it was the nation's 14th largest denomination. In 2015, Pew Research estimated that 1.2 percent of the adult population in the United States, or 3 million people, self-identify as mainline Episcopalians.The church was organized after the American Revolution, when it became separate from the Church of England, whose clergy are required to swear allegiance to the British monarch as Supreme Governor of the Church of England. The Episcopal Church describes itself as "Protestant, yet Catholic". The Episcopal Church claims apostolic succession, tracing its bishops back to the apostles via holy orders. The Book of Common Prayer, a collection of traditional rites, blessings, liturgies, and prayers used throughout the Anglican Communion, is central to Episcopal worship.

The Episcopal Church was active in the Social Gospel movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Since the 1960s and 1970s, the church has pursued a decidedly more liberal course. It has opposed the death penalty and supported the civil rights movement and affirmative action. Some of its leaders and priests are known for marching with influential civil rights demonstrators such as Martin Luther King Jr. The Church calls for the full legal equality of LGBT people. In 2015, the Church's 78th triennial General Convention passed resolutions allowing the blessing of same-sex marriages and approved two official liturgies to bless such unions.The Episcopal Church ordains women and LGBT people to the priesthood, the diaconate, and the episcopate, despite opposition from a number of other member churches of the Anglican Communion. In 2003, Gene Robinson became the first openly gay person ordained as a bishop.

International Standard Book Number

The International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is a numeric commercial book identifier which is intended to be unique. Publishers purchase ISBNs from an affiliate of the International ISBN Agency.An ISBN is assigned to each edition and variation (except reprintings) of a book. For example, an e-book, a paperback and a hardcover edition of the same book would each have a different ISBN. The ISBN is 13 digits long if assigned on or after 1 January 2007, and 10 digits long if assigned before 2007. The method of assigning an ISBN is nation-based and varies from country to country, often depending on how large the publishing industry is within a country.

The initial ISBN identification format was devised in 1967, based upon the 9-digit Standard Book Numbering (SBN) created in 1966. The 10-digit ISBN format was developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and was published in 1970 as international standard ISO 2108 (the SBN code can be converted to a ten-digit ISBN by prefixing it with a zero digit "0").

Privately published books sometimes appear without an ISBN. The International ISBN agency sometimes assigns such books ISBNs on its own initiative.Another identifier, the International Standard Serial Number (ISSN), identifies periodical publications such as magazines; and the International Standard Music Number (ISMN) covers for musical scores.

Lutheranism

Lutheranism is a major branch of western Christianity that identifies with the teaching of Martin Luther, a 16th century German reformer. Luther's efforts to reform the theology and practice of the church launched the Protestant Reformation. The reaction of the government and church authorities to the international spread of his writings, beginning with the 95 Theses, divided Western Christianity.The split between the Lutherans and the Catholics was made public and clear with the 1521 Edict of Worms: the edicts of the Diet condemned Luther and officially banned citizens of the Holy Roman Empire from defending or propagating his ideas, subjecting advocates of Lutheranism to forfeiture of all property, half of the seized property to be forfeit to the imperial government and the remaining half forfeit to the party who brought the accusation.The divide centered primarily on two points: the proper source of authority in the church, often called the formal principle of the Reformation, and the doctrine of justification, often called the material principle of Lutheran theology. Lutheranism advocates a doctrine of justification "by grace alone through faith alone on the basis of Scripture alone", the doctrine that scripture is the final authority on all matters of faith. This is in contrast to the belief of the Roman Catholic Church, defined at the Council of Trent, concerning authority coming from both the Scriptures and Tradition.Unlike Calvinism, Lutherans retain many of the liturgical practices and sacramental teachings of the pre-Reformation Church, with a particular emphasis on the Eucharist, or Lord's Supper. Lutheran theology differs from Reformed theology in Christology, divine grace, the purpose of God's Law, the concept of perseverance of the saints, and predestination.

Marvel Comics

Marvel Comics is the brand name and primary imprint of Marvel Worldwide Inc., formerly Marvel Publishing, Inc. and Marvel Comics Group, a publisher of American comic books and related media. In 2009, The Walt Disney Company acquired Marvel Entertainment, Marvel Worldwide's parent company.

Marvel started in 1939 with the common name for that early Golden Age is Timely Comics, and by the early 1950s, had generally become known as Atlas Comics. The Marvel era began in 1961, the year that the company launched The Fantastic Four and other superhero titles created by Steve Ditko, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and many others. The Marvel brand had been used over the years, but solidified as the company's only brand with in a couple of years.

Marvel counts among its characters such well-known superheroes as Iron Man, Captain America, the Hulk, Thor, Spider-Man, Black Panther, Doctor Strange, Wolverine, the Silver Surfer, Daredevil, Ghost Rider, the Punisher and Deadpool, such teams as the Avengers, the X-Men, the Fantastic Four, the Midnight Sons and the Guardians of the Galaxy, and supervillains including Thanos, Doctor Doom, Magneto, Ultron, Green Goblin, Red Skull, Loki, Doctor Octopus and Venom. Most of Marvel's fictional characters operate in a single reality known as the Marvel Universe, with most locations mirroring real-life places; many major characters are based in New York City.

Multimedia

Multimedia is content that uses a combination of different content forms such as text, audio, images, animations, video and interactive content. Multimedia contrasts with media that use only rudimentary computer displays such as text-only or traditional forms of printed or hand-produced material.

Multimedia can be recorded and played, displayed, interacted with or accessed by information content processing devices, such as computerized and electronic devices, but can also be part of a live performance. Multimedia devices are electronic media devices used to store and experience multimedia content. Multimedia is distinguished from mixed media in fine art; for example, by including audio it has a broader scope. In the early years of multimedia the term "rich media" was synonymous with interactive multimedia, and "hypermedia" was an application of multimedia.

Open access

Open access (OA) is a mechanism by which research outputs are distributed online, free of cost or other barriers, and, in its most precise meaning, with the addition of an open license applied to promote reuse.Academic articles (as historically seen in print-based academic journals) have been the main focus of the movement. Conventional (non-open access) journals cover publishing costs through access tolls such as subscriptions, site licenses or pay-per-view charges. Open access can be applied to all forms of published research output, including peer-reviewed and non peer-reviewed academic journal articles, conference papers, theses, book chapters, and monographs.

Random House

Random House is an American book publisher and the largest general-interest paperback publisher in the world.

As of 2013, it is part of Penguin Random House, which is jointly owned by German media conglomerate Bertelsmann and British global education and publishing company Pearson PLC.

Website

A website or Web site is a collection of related network web resources, such as web pages, multimedia content, which are typically identified with a common domain name, and published on at least one web server. Notable examples are wikipedia.org, google.com, and amazon.com.

Websites can be accessed via a public Internet Protocol (IP) network, such as the Internet, or a private local area network (LAN), by a uniform resource locator (URL) that identifies the site.

Websites can have many functions and can be used in various fashions; a website can be a personal website, a corporate website for a company, a government website, an organization website, etc. Websites are typically dedicated to a particular topic or purpose, ranging from entertainment and social networking to providing news and education. All publicly accessible websites collectively constitute the World Wide Web, while private websites, such as a company's website for its employees, are typically part of an intranet.

Web pages, which are the building blocks of websites, are documents, typically composed in plain text interspersed with formatting instructions of Hypertext Markup Language (HTML, XHTML). They may incorporate elements from other websites with suitable markup anchors. Web pages are accessed and transported with the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP), which may optionally employ encryption (HTTP Secure, HTTPS) to provide security and privacy for the user. The user's application, often a web browser, renders the page content according to its HTML markup instructions onto a display terminal.

Hyperlinking between web pages conveys to the reader the site structure and guides the navigation of the site, which often starts with a home page containing a directory of the site web content. Some websites require user registration or subscription to access content. Examples of subscription websites include many business sites, news websites, academic journal websites, gaming websites, file-sharing websites, message boards, web-based email, social networking websites, websites providing real-time stock market data, as well as sites providing various other services. End users can access websites on a range of devices, including desktop and laptop computers, tablet computers, smartphones and smart TVs.

Whitney Houston

Whitney Elizabeth Houston (August 9, 1963 – February 11, 2012) was an American singer and actress. She was cited as the most awarded female artist of all time by Guinness World Records and remains one of the best-selling music artists of all time with 200 million records sold worldwide. She released seven studio albums and two soundtrack albums, all of which have been certified diamond, multi-platinum, platinum, or gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Houston's crossover appeal on the popular music charts—as well as her prominence on MTV, starting with her video for "How Will I Know"—influenced several African-American women artists who followed in her footsteps.

Houston began singing in church as a child and became a background vocalist while in high school. With the guidance of Arista Records chairman Clive Davis, she signed to the label at the age of 19. Her first two studio albums, Whitney Houston (1985) and Whitney (1987), both reached number one on the Billboard 200 in the United States and became two of the world's best-selling albums of all time. She became the only artist to have seven consecutive number-one singles on the Billboard Hot 100 chart, from "Saving All My Love for You" in 1985 to "Where Do Broken Hearts Go" in 1988.

Houston made her screen acting debut in the romantic thriller film The Bodyguard (1992). She recorded seven songs for the film's soundtrack, including "I Will Always Love You", which received the Grammy Award for Record of the Year and became the best-selling single by a woman in music history. The soundtrack album received the Grammy Award for Album of the Year and remains the world's best-selling soundtrack album of all time. Houston made other high-profile film appearances, including Waiting to Exhale (1995) and The Preacher's Wife (1996). The theme song "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)" became her eleventh and final number-one single on the Hot 100 chart, while The Preacher Wife's soundtrack became the best-selling gospel album in history.

Following the critical and commercial success of My Love Is Your Love (1998), Houston signed a $100 million contract with Arista Records. However, her personal struggles began overshadowing her career, and the album Just Whitney (2002) received mixed reviews. Her drug use and tumultuous marriage to Bobby Brown were widely publicized in media. After a six-year break from recording, Houston returned to the top of the Billboard 200 chart with her final studio album, I Look to You (2009).

On February 11, 2012, Houston was found dead in the Beverly Hilton, Beverly Hills, California. The coroner's report showed that she had accidentally drowned in the bathtub, with heart disease and cocaine use as contributing factors. News of her death coincided with the 2012 Grammy Awards and featured prominently in international media.

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