Publishing Program - Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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Modular content: a new publishing strategy at the Continuing Legal Education Society of British Columbia

Date created: 
2017-02-01
Abstract: 

This report is a case study of a new publishing model entitled structured modular content,adopted by the Continuing Legal Education Society of British Columbia in order to upgrade theiroutdated production system that did not allow for easy reuse of content. In order to implementthis new publishing concept, the Society initiated a project entitled Content Strategy, with theobjective to publish material in independent modules that can be easily recycled. Through thisproject, the Society had to convert all of their content to XML DITA, an open standardfor structuring, developing, managing, and publishing content, with the help of DITA CMS, acomponent management system. This report studies what structured modular content is and howit works, the challenges that the Society encountered while converting their content and how theyovercame them and the new possibilities that structured modular content provides: new products.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
John Maxwell
Juan Pablo Alperin
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

From the Aldine Press to Aldus@SFU: Showcasing Simon Fraser University Library’s Aldines Online

Date created: 
2017-01-25
Abstract: 

This report stems from a joint commemoration in 2015 of the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of Simon Fraser University and the five-hundredth anniversary of the death of pioneering Renaissance publisher and scholar Aldus Manutius. To mark these occasions, Publishing@SFU and SFU Library Special Collections joined forces to create a web-based resource comprising an outstanding selection of Aldines from the Wosk–McDonald collection, one of the largest such in North America. This report details the creation of Aldus@SFU, a prototype digital exhibition of the collection intended to be as widely accessible as possible on the Internet through ubiquitous technologies. Adopting a syncretic approach that emphasizes the continuous relationship between innovation and tradition, this report outlines and explores the key intersections between Aldus’ plan to popularize classical literature and the core mission of our project: to contribute to public knowledge by making SFU Aldines conveniently and freely available online via a flexible, mobile-optimized user interface. With original contributions from both scholars and popular media figures complementing the digitized volumes, Aldus@SFU is more than a mere companion website to a library collection. Instead, it is intended as a larger crossover digital platform: an inclusive, collaborative scholarly environment and a visually appealing educational resource whose audience includes not only scholars but also a wider interested public.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
John W. Maxwell
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Breathing New Life into Comic Collections: Drawn & Quarterly's Choice to Reformat & Republish for a Young Readership

Author: 
Abstract: 

Graphic novels and comic reprints have recently surged in popularity due to Hollywood adaptations and bestselling titles such as Art Spiegelman’s Maus and Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis. Despite these successes, publishers still struggle to find the right audience for many comic collections. This report focuses on Drawn & Quarterly’s decision to reprint two comic collections in smaller, kid-friendly editions. It analyzes why D+Q decided to reformat the Janssons’ Moomin comics and Mizuki’s Kitaro manga for specific readerships, with a focus on the emerging genre of crossover literature. The importance of accessibility for serialized comics/manga and crossover literature is underlined as a reason why these titles are ideal for a redesign, and the production work done by the D+Q staff to turn each title into a “kid-friendly” work is explained. Lastly, the report offers insight on how publishers can use D+Q’s tactic for their own success.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Hannah McGregor
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Beyond the book: Metadata practices at the University of British Columbia Press

Date created: 
2016-12-05
Abstract: 

This project report focuses on book metadata practices at the University of British Columbia Press. Metadata management has become essential for publishers in recent decades, as book buying has moved online. This report details the significance of metadata, how publishers use it, how customers (both institutional and individual) benefit from it, and how (good) metadata increases sales. Metadata has become increasingly complex, with varying deadlines, standards, levels, and granularity putting immense pressure on publishers to keep current. This project report analyzes the University of British Columbia Press’ metadata operations to identify its challenges and successes. The report also draws on the current literature of metadata “best practices” for publishers. In tandem, these resources clarify optimal future directions and recommendations for the Press.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
John Maxwell
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Twitterbot Surveys: A Method for Magazine Audience Analysis

Date created: 
2016-12-06
Abstract: 

The purpose of this study is to explore automated surveys on Twitter as a method for magazines to analyse their audiences and identify best practices for conducting the surveys. To do this I conducted a pilot survey with Twitter users who shared a New Yorker article. I tested the response rate of twelve different question variants looking at question type, type of appeal to respondent used, and whether the tweet was sent as a @reply or @mention. The results showed the survey as a whole had a 23.2% response rate. I found a multiple-choice question, appealing to the respondents’ ego sent as a @reply generated the highest response rate at 40.0%. The results of this pilot survey show the viability for this method to provide magazines with access to their audiences. It suggests this method may provide magazines with timely and efficient access to audience insights.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Juan Pablo Alperin
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

The Corporate Articulation of Boutique Publishing

Date created: 
2016-12-14
Abstract: 

This report aims to define corporate boutique publishing and its unique positioning, while placing it in a wider boutique landscape. This includes examining the wider application of the term ‘boutique’ in the book world and establishing how the corporate articulation of this is both similar and different. Finding itself at the crossroads of small, specialized publishing and powerful, big league publishing, corporate boutique imprints can boast of having the best of both worlds. This report concludes with a number of recommendations on how such publishers can better take advantage of this place of power.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Mauve Page
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Mizuki Reimagined: Japanese-to-English Manga for the Young North American Reader

Abstract: 

With growing interest in visual literacy from parents, librarians, and educators, the North American kids manga industry is booming, and more and more publishers are trying their hand at Japanese-to-English manga translations to meet the growing the demand. But such projects pose unique publishing challenges that are influenced by manga’s history, readers’ expectations, the receptivity of the North American book market, and a publisher’s mandate. This report examines the process of bringing Japanese manga to a North American audience through a case study of one publisher, Drawn & Quarterly, and its translation of Shigeru Mizuki’s Kitaro series. Throughout, this report emphasizes the translation and production challenges involved, and also offers historical and cultural information about manga publishing, Drawn & Quarterly, Mizuki, and the growing educational market for kids’ comics in North America.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Mauve Pagé
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Openly embracing change: how the Rebus Foundation is building a new model of publishing

Date created: 
2016-12-16
Abstract: 

This report discusses the challenges posed to the publishing industry by digital disruption and the shift from content scarcity to content abundance. Publishing business models have been based on the ability to sell exclusive access to content, but low barriers to entry for content creators mean that this model will come under increased pressure. The Rebus Foundation has been founded in response to these challenges and is working to create the tools necessary to define a new publishing process that seeks to both enable and benefit from content abundance. The first projects from the Foundation are being launched in the Open Textbook sphere, where traditional publishers have been able to exclusively sell access to content in a way that is increasingly under threat. In response, the Foundation is launching the Rebus Community to scale up the production of Open Textbooks, deploying open communication, open licensing and open tools that form a collaborative approach first seen with the Open Source community. The Foundation’s work, if successful, will have significant consequences for the current education and textbook publishing industries, shifting the value from content to innovative teaching and learning. It will also have consequences for the publishing industry at large, potentially redefining what it means to be a publisher, and modelling an approach to publishing that embraces the undeniable shift that comes from a world of content abundance.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Juan Pablo Alperin
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

Two Game Sweep: How Mid-Sized Publishers Make the Decision to Release Two Physical Formats of a Book, using Black Ice as a Case Study

Author: 
Date created: 
2016-11-21
Abstract: 

This report analyzes mid-sized publishers’ decisions regarding whether it is profitable to release a second physical format of a previously published book and the publicity practices for second releases at ECW Press, an independent Canadian publisher in Toronto, Ontario. The first chapter of this report describes the book being used as a case study, Black Ice, and discusses ECW Press’s decision to publish it. The second chapter summarizes the history of two-format publishing and how this influences the decisions pertaining to formats that publishers make today. Chapter three discusses how ECW Press decides which format is most appropriate for a book and the key factors that indicate to them that printing a subsequent trade paperback edition of a previously released hardcover will be profitable. The final chapter uses Black Ice as a publicity case study, demonstrating how mid-sized publishers publicize the release of the second edition of a book and how it differs from promoting the first release.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
John Maxwell
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.

The New Star Podcast: A Publicity Project

Date created: 
2016-08-25
Abstract: 

In 2015 New Star Books—a small, Canadian press—created a podcast for the promotion of its authors. The Happy Hour Symposia aimed to promote authors and create intimacy, or a marketing connection with listeners. This report evaluates the progress of New Star’s strategy from initial goal setting to podcast production and distribution. The press and its authors may have enjoyed a short-lived success through the podcast, however future episodes will be sporadic and depend on the press’s decision to promote authors through the podcast. The report makes several suggestions pertaining to the improvement of the project and concludes that the podcast was a good publicity tool for its authors despite the press’s uncertainty of producing future episodes.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
John Maxwell
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project Report) M.Pub.