Going Digital (Press)

In an Inside Higher Ed article released this morning, Michael Spooner announces that Utah State University Press will move to open access and add digital publishing to its repertoire. It is not the first–University of Michigan Press went digital for monograph publication and Computers and Composition Digital Press (an imprint of Utah State University Press) released its first offering this year, Technological Ecologies and Sustainability. Given that CCDP is an imprint of USUP, what does this announcement mean?

Most immediately, it will mean that the digital option opens up for books that are not focused on Computers and Writing. USUP has a broader range of interests than that, and it would be a shame to see it drop areas as other presses have done. More importantly, at least it seems significant to me as one who thinks about media and remediation in the Bolter/Gruisin sense of the word, this means that for more than one press, digital publishing is moving out of the tech ghetto into scholarly areas where historically and even currently, print is privileged. Print on demand is still available. but my hope is that the dimensionality possible with digital publishing will make people rethink print enough to see the strengths of both.

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Author of the poetry collection The Tethered Ground and Professor of English at Missouri State University. Contact me for readings or for workshops on writing/publishing and on teaching writing online.

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