Like music and video, perhaps the future of publishing isn't the hardcopy, brick-and-motor, multi-layer distribution channel rife with overhead expenses, store rents and employee costs? Maybe like Itunes, it's digital. Even Amazon seems outdated to me. True, some will always prefer a hardcopy, for readability and access. Something about a print edition having a tangible, satisfaction to it. But what about authors going purely digital? Like the Kahn online academy? No need for publishers, marketers, distributors and retail fronts, that eat the lions share of the sales price in overhead, transportation and brick-and-motor costs. Digital publishing, like the music industry (digital producing), eliminates the entire "middle-man" industry and makes the author publisher, and directly connects them to the consumer. With digital delivery, the cost to "publish" and deliver a book is hardly more than the cost to write it. Books that retail for 20 or 30 dollars, could easily sell for 3 or 4, while the author maintains their original profit margin. This represents a huge efficiency to the marketplace, makes accessible a wealth of information to the underclass and third world, and does to publishers what google did to print advertisers. Maybe the big paper publishers of the world are a good long-term short (HarperCollins, MacMillian, Random House etc), along with big retail store-fronts (Chapters, Barnes and Noble etc)? Maybe there's an opportunity here to create an online clearinghouse/retailer for digital publishers and their content? Similar to iTunes? Or Netflix?