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

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The importance of brand extension: How Irish women’s lifestyle magazines are reinventing themselves in the digital era

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-03-30
Abstract: 

This report highlights the effects of the disruption in the magazine industry in recent years (pre the COVID-19 global pandemic) and explores how brand extension and diversification of revenue has been necessary in order for print magazines to stay afloat. It focuses on how Irish women’s lifestyle magazine Irish Tatler—at which I completed my 3-month professional placement—has employed external events as a means of both generating revenue and fostering a strong sense of community and loyalty amongst readers. It also explores ways in which the magazine could further extend its brand through implementing new reader events and partnerships.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Leanne Johnson
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Pub.

Accessibility and Aldus@SFU: Exploring multiple avenues of access for digital exhibits and academic research

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-08-10
Abstract: 

This report analyzes four different avenues of accessibility as they pertain to digital exhibits and academic research. Using Simon Fraser University’s Aldus@SFU Digitized Collection as a case study, this report looks at accessibility through the avenues of digitization, openness, publicness, and functionality to break down the current and future needs of diverse audiences. While accessibility is a complex topic, this report breaks down the needs of several different user groups and outlines what can be done to fulfill those needs and create content that is universally available and accessible.

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

Mushroom for improvement: a model for the circulation of fanfiction sub-genres

Date created: 
2021-06-28
Abstract: 

This thesis explores the circulation of fanfiction sub-genres across fan communities as starting point for further inquiries into fan object movement among fans. Fan studies has long been interested in the circulation of fan objects, but lacks a broad understanding of how these objects move through space and time (Hills 2014). In applying Mikhail Bakhtin’s concept of heteroglossia to describe fan communities, objects and circulatory behaviours, I analyze two case studies to propose a new model. The first tracks the circulation of a trope on Tumblr, while the second explores the movement of a fanfiction sub-genre across platforms, post types and fandoms. My proposed model is based on the radiating structure of mycelium (the vegetative part of a fungus). Mycelium’s branching and agile nature provides a more accurate framework for ever-evolving fannish circulatory practice.

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

The web publication development process for engaging small communities

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-04-27
Abstract: 

This report outlines the process used for creating the Master of Publishing 25th anniversary web publication and discusses the design and editorial practices implemented to engage the main audience, the program’s alumni. The report also explores the application of Lean manufacturing, a process improvement methodology, to the publication development process and suggests Lean practices and tools that can be used to improve and maintain the publication in the future. Best practices for the management of the publication and increasing community engagement are also discussed.

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

Towards a better future: How Engage Books creates books that make a difference

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-04-27
Abstract: 

This report looks at the changing landscape of Engage Books as they switch their focus from publishing classic titles to publishing children’s books under the mandate ‘books that make a difference,’ and the tactics they are implementing to push boundaries within the children’s publishing industry. To provide context as to where Engage Books stands as an independent children’s publisher, the report gives a brief overview of the history of the acceptability of sensitive topics in children's literature and the relationship between censorship and small presses. Engage Books has adopted the philosophy that it is easier to shape the minds of children than it is to change the minds of those who are already set in their ways, and thus, has begun introducing previously censored information and major world crises to children in an attempt to help the next generation become informed and engaged citizens who can help create a better society.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Scott Steedman
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Pub.

Festivals in the time of corona

Author: 
Date created: 
2021-04-28
Abstract: 

In a year that mirrored a well-written dystopic fiction, the world was brought to a standstill by a pandemic. But while the COVID-19 crisis threatened to push pause on everything, many in the world of arts stuck to the old adage of “the show must go on.” This was true of numerous literary festivals around the globe who confronted the challenges posed by the pandemic and expeditiously adapted to deliver their content in a digital format. And with this perseverance a new festival model was designed to suit the needs of the hour, which in turn helped many arts organizations realize their long overdue dream of moving towards more accessible and inclusive offerings. With a primary focus on the Vancouver Writers Fest, this project will look at how literary festivals across Canada strove to build community and dialogue in these times of isolation, all designed to be consumed from the comfort of one’s home, for free. The aim is to understand the various nuances of shifting a traditionally in-person festival to a digital space with all its benefits and drawbacks. The report will also be exploring how this phenomenon might usher in a new era of spatially and financially unrestricted festivals, made accessible to a more diverse range of audience, across borders.

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Supervisor(s): 
Scott Steedman
Department: 
Communication, Art & Technology: Publishing Program
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.Pub.

Going digital-first: Book marketing’s response to COVID-19

Author: 
Date created: 
2020-12-18
Abstract: 

This report explores the impacts of COVID-19 on book marketing, and how to take a digital-first marketing approach, using the University of British Columbia Press (UBC Press) as a case study to explore how a scholarly publisher adapts their marketing activities. These adaptations include how UBC Press pivoted by using digital marketing strategies, such as social media, academic campaigns, and Congress from your Couch, and with a collective marketing project as a part of the Association of Canadian University Presses (ACUP). This report outlines the ACUP collective marketing project in its beginning stages from concept to initial designs. It concludes that it is essential for publishers, both trade and scholarly, to adapt strategic and community-focused digital marketing approaches in order to be flexible when faced with sudden changes.

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

The growth of library publishing in North America and the role of the Open Journal System

Author: 
Date created: 
2020-12-15
Abstract: 

Scholarly or academic publishing is one of the most lucrative sectors in the publishing industry; ever since the 1960s, commercial publishers have profited from disseminating academic research and scholarship. This has resulted from the commercialization of journals in the 1940s that shifted scholarship from a public good to a commodity. As of 2018, scholarly publishing is estimated to be a $25 billion-dollar industry. While there are other types of publishers, including non-profit, society and library publishers in the scholarly space, they generate a small portion of scholarly output and revenue compared to commercial publishers. This report examines the trends that influenced library publishing, a relatively new type of publisher that emerged in the early 2000s within North America, and the concurrent growth of Open Journal Systems among North American academic libraries. Libraries were and continue to be supporters of Open Journal Systems, both financially and through their use of the software. New technologies such as Open Journal Systems allow library publishers to address some of the issues that resulted from the commercialization of scholarly research. As of 2018, at least 92 educational institutions from Canada and the United States use Open Journal Systems. This report also provides an analysis of library publishing as a field within scholarly publishing. Library publishers are willing to experiment with content and media, and their expertise in metadata and the relationships they maintain with academics are their strengths as publishers. As library publishing is an extension of their role as libraries, they may not have the resources (labour and financial) or support to execute this work entirely. Library publishers could utilize the relationships they have within their broader community to develop publishing partnerships. As library publishing is relatively new, they face a challenge in becoming seen as a legitimate publishing avenue. While it is unlikely that all libraries will take on this new role, having library publishers is overall beneficial, as it provides an alternative route to publish work and a means to publish content ignored by traditional publishers.

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

The enhanced ebook: Its past, present, and future place in the North American publishing industry

Author: 
Date created: 
2020-12-10
Abstract: 

The enhanced ebook format—an ebook featuring multimedia elements such as audio, video, and animations—was released in 2010, yet it has been largely unused. Despite its potential, only 23% of publishers in Canada produced an enhanced ebook each year between 2014 and 2017.1 The format can excel in the scholarly/professional, trade/consumer, and educational/K to 12 marketplaces; however, it is held back by the same hurdles that halted its progress in 2010. Poor retailer and device support, lack of classification and discoverability, slow consumer adoption, and caution from publishers to invest were, and still are, roadblocks that inhibit the enhanced ebook format from gaining popularity. In an effort to understand why the enhanced ebook format has not gained traction, this report will assess the enhanced ebook format, and its past, present, and future place in the North American publishing industry.

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

Self-published authors and the production and distribution of audiobooks

Author: 
Date created: 
2020-09-15
Abstract: 

The lack of clarity on the audiobook publishing processes for self-published authors leaves a potential gap in the Canadian market for the creation of a new independent audiobook production service. Due to the rising popularity of audiobooks, there is a wealth of online resources available, but they offer conflicting advice and highly variable pricing information, leaving self-published authors unsure of where to start. This research presents possible audiobook production solutions for indie authors. Self-published authors were surveyed and interviewed, in order to uncover their thoughts about audiobooks as well as their priorities involved with creating an audiobook of their own. This research is analyzed alongside a literature review of current audiobook production and market trends. The audiobook production solutions proposed in this report focus on the service offerings of a specific company called TSPA The Self Publishing Agency Inc. for whom this research was initiated. This research also aims to benefit the wider publishing industry in Canada, to help foster a healthy and prosperous audiobook market.

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