Out of Ink: Future Publishing Industries probes the thresholds and blurred seams between digital and print publishing and also develops practices and concepts that more accurately define and drive acts of publishing today.
The initiative applies practice-based research by using active publishing imprints (Theory on Demand, Network Notebooks, INC Readers, etc.) to test aspects of the entire publishing process. The initiative, which specifically focuses on the production of scholarly and theoretical non-fiction work, tests a widening landscape of distribution platforms and asks how the content and design of a written work translates across print and digital mediums. One aim is to act as an organized facilitator of DIY practices, to further professionalize them and provide a model for others.
Beyond this, the initiative sees publishing as more than communicating and distributing an author’s idea to a public but also as a way to challenge legal, technical and social standards embedded in intellectual property, scholarly communication, and notions of authorship. This is because the tools of ‘professional’ publishing are more widely available than before, in the form of software, ubiquitous office printers, and cheap binding machines. This condition is impacted by a copyright system upheld through outmoded legal tools that often favor corporate publishers. Publishing can then be seen as a way to experiment with disruptive revenue models, novel legal tools, and possible forms of knowledge production that combine digital and analogue means.