The web's reading platform.

The New York Review of Books Turns the Page

Readability was built from the ground up to embrace publishers of every shape, size, and definition. From the humble blog comment to the status update on up, all we produce and consume online is content: by extension (as web professionals know), everyone is a de facto publisher on the web. Allowing readers to reward the publishers and writers they read most just feels right to us, and so Readability does not discriminate between publishers—no matter their pedigree or price of entry—whether it’s a cat blog or nytimes.com.

Yet not every publisher is the New York Review of Books, which today sports the Readability button throughout its site.

Fig. I. Readability buttons embedded at NYBooks.com

We believe the pleasures of anywhere, anytime reading are only beginning to find their natural, wider audience with established readerships like the Review’s. Astute publishers, for their part, recognize the prevailing modes of content discovery and consumption are changing rapidly online. Readability offers a revenue-positive path for them to stay connected to the shift afoot (all digital reading is becoming “read later” reading), and allows readers the freedom of enjoying and sharing great content on a range of devices, at no cost or inconvenience to publishers. Publishers, for their part, gain insight into how their content is being consumed across our platform, online and off.

We are especially pleased the Review is stepping out publicly with us at a time when some publishers, faced with manifold challenges, are re-entrenching in legacy business models or retreating from the promise of the web. The Review itself was born in a time of industry transition; it’s only fitting they understand the importance of addressing readers’ needs—on readers’ own terms.

The ongoing reinvention of the publishing industry will be a journey of many successive steps, big and small. The principle of putting readers first airs a resounding note of respect for what readers clearly want, and for where they are already—in digital droves toting phones and e-readers—taking the reading experience.

As for us, we’re looking forward to sharing more of the fruits of our collaborative efforts with publishers. There’s much more to come.

Watch this space.

Jeffrey MacIntyre (@jeffmacintyre) is an Arc90 Lead Strategist and freelance writer. He is an advisory board member of Readability.

3 Responses »

  1. My novels are great reads. Do you do reviews paid or unpaid? My reviews on my latest book To Make a Perfect World got a five star and four star review. If you are interested in reviewing and charge a fee please advise. You may order a book to be reviewed by contacting my publisher by email at publishamerica.com

  2. Glad to see this being embraced. I think it’s a great model, and am happy to spread the word.

    Wormser: you just ensured that no one will want to read your book. Spam tastes bad.

  3. Awesome! I’ll look into how to embed this functionality in my own sites.