International Industry Notes: Beijing Book Fair, Japan’s Mobile Games, Scotland’s Indie Publishers

In News by Porter Anderson

Zhejiang University Press has events at BIBF this week, as Japan’s Toto Serkan looks at Japan’s mobile gaming market, and Scotland’s Society of Young Publishers weighs the interest in new skills.
'A Collection of Song Dynasty Paintings' in 23 volumes and 'A Collection of Yuan Dynasty Paintings' in 16 volumes are part of a seminar Wednesday (August 24) at Beijing International Book Fair, offered by Zhejiang University Press.

‘A Collection of Song Dynasty Paintings’ in 23 volumes and ‘A Collection of Yuan Dynasty Paintings’ in 16 volumes are part of a seminar Wednesday (August 24) at Beijing International Book Fair, offered by Zhejiang University Press.

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson

News from Zhejiang University Press
Among events at the 23rd Beijing International Book Fair (BIBF) this week, Zhejiang University Press (ZJUP) and Palgrave Macmillan—an imprint of Springer Nature—are signing a contract to co-publish The Great Transformation of China, a series on China’s “economic transformation, innovation and development.”

BIBF logo lined 2In a prepared statement on the joint series project, we read: “The series will conduct analysis on critical issues and mid- to long-term economic development problems, such as regional coordinated development, financial restructuring, transformation of the modern service industry, energy strategy, governmental management mode, occurring during the ’12th Five-Year Plan.’  The series then goes on to examine what issues are to be resolved during the “13th Five-Year Plan” for China’s development in the next five to 10 years.”

Also at BIBF, Wednesday afternoon’s agenda (August 24) will include a seminar on a series of ancient Chinese paintings being published by  ZJUP, featuring A Collection of Song Dynasty Paintings in 23 volumes and A Collection of Yuan Dynasty Paintings in 16 volumes.

Information from the publisher characterizes this publication project as “the first worldwide, comprehensive, and systematic cultural project after investigation, arrangement, verification, research, and publication of existing Chinese paintings.” The players involved— including Zhejiang University Press’ Prof. Xiao Yanyi and Palace Museum Deputy President Yu Hui—are to participate in the seminar, as is Lin Yang, Editor-in-Chief of China Fine Arts Publishing Group.

The publication of the artworks includes 10-micron FM screen platemaking and six-color printing on high-grade stock from Germany.

The Song Dynasty series comprises 834 works from 78 museums and other institutions. The Yuan Dynasty series looks at 605 works from the collections of 93 organizations in Europe, the United States, Japan, and China.

Is Japan’s Mobile Game Market the World’s Largest?
Serkan Toto

Serkan Toto

On the blog site of Kantan Games, CEO Serkan Toto writes of new updates on the size of the Japanese market in mobile games in 2015. Citing statistics released by Mobile Content Forum (MCF) and Computer Entertainment Suppliers Association, Toto writes, “If these two organizations are to be believed, Japan is (very likely) the world’s biggest market for mobile games–at least for now.”

The Mobile Content report indicates that in 2016, Japan’s smart-device games market reached US$9.5 billion.

A very comparable number comes in from Computer Entertainment’s (CESA) report, putting the figure at US$9.3 billion. CESA sees a split of 50.3 percent in favor of iOS devices, the rest Android.

And for comparison, CESA places the North American market at US$8.6 billion.

From MCF’s data, Toto draws past-years’ numbers indicating, as he writes, a slowing of growth, from US$2.5 billion in 2012 to the latest 2015 figure of US$9.5 billion. The biggest jump—of more than US$4 billion—seems to have occurred from 2013 to 2014, when Japan’s mobile gaming market was valued at US$5.5 billion in 2013 and US$8.9 billion in 2014.

Scotland’s Indie Publishers: Smart Cookies
Heather McDaid

Heather McDaid

At The Bookseller’s The FutureBook, the Society of Young Publishers’ (SYP) Heather McDaid writes of what independent presses in Scotland are needing most.

“The main demand we get is for practical skills.” McDaid writes.

“Networking is vital and it’s true that everyone knows everyone in publishing after a while, but our members are hungry for detailed insights and hands-on skills that will help them keep up with today’s demanding digital-physical environment.

“Our first conference’s coding workshop was our most popular event,” McDaid writes, “and the follow-up workshop from Perthshire-based Creativelab, giving InDesign tips and tricks, was one of our fastest sellers. Unsurprisingly, we have future plans for further training in tech and coding in publishing.”

And why are skills so central?

“We have more than 100 publishers, McDaid writes, but team numbers are small. Saraband, the publisher of 2016 Man Booker-longlisted Graeme Macrae Burnet’s His Bloody Project, is a small dynamic team. Outsourcing work is integral to how many publishers here operate and survive—and indeed influences how many young publishers get their foot in the door0151across editorial, marketing, PR and more.”

The points McDaid is making closely echo the commentary heard from Emma Barnes, whose development of Bibliocloud has led her to become something of a UK leader in the idea of publishing staffers’ need for technical skills.

McDaid clearly is a soulmate, concluding in her article:

“Publishing is a very old industry boasting people with a lot of knowledge and experience, but young publishers are coming into the industry with essential and inherent skills–digital understanding, coding, marketing, editorial, website content—that the market badly needs. Our future lies in exploring how to utilize, enhance and celebrate these skills. Indeed, if we’re sure about one thing, it’s that those skills are going to be used in a host of unexpected ways.

“For the established industry, this isn’t just about hiring the next smart cookie—it’s about finding ways to collaborate with them that will maintain their need for independence and continual change.”

About the Author

Porter Anderson

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Porter Anderson is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. Prior to that he was Associate Editor for The FutureBook, a channel at The Bookseller focused on digital publishing. Anderson has also worked with CNN International, CNN.com, CNN USA, the Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and other media.