Citation Squires C (2020) The Global Market 1970-2015: Consumers. In: Eliot S & Rose J (eds.) A Companion to the History of the Book. 2nd ed. Blackwell Companions to Literature and Culture, 102. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, pp. 601-614. https://doi.org/10.1002/9781119018193.ch40
Abstract From 1970 onward, then, via mergers and acquisitions, the ownership of publishing companies became increasingly globalized. This chapter addresses evidence for the plurality of output in a globalized marketplace, the impact of this for the consumer, and the growing opportunities seemingly afforded by fan fiction and self‐publishing platforms. Consumption has become much easier to quantify in the post‐1970 period in some countries with the introduction of electronic point of sale systems. General book consumer surveys exist in various publishing markets, but their coverage is patchy, and they often use non‐comparable statistical bases. The variable levels of data provided via the International Publishers Association website clearly demonstrate this knowledge gap and confirm Robert Darnton's statement about the difficulties inherent in the study of reading. Moreover, given the variable ways in which readers acquire books, patterns of consumption do not strictly mirror patterns of reading.
Keywords book consumer; electronic point of sale systems; globalized marketplace; market knowledge; publishing markets