Back at the beginning of this month, the Macmillan publishing company announced that it would no longer make paper dictionaries. In a blog post titled Stop the presses — the end of the printed dictionary, Michael Rundell, the editor-in-chief of the famed Macmillan Dictionary, made the case thus:
“Thirty years ago, the arrival of corpus data sparked a revolution in the way of dictionaries are created. Now we’re in the middle of a second revolution, whose consequences could be even more far-reaching. The digital revolution has already led to seismic changes in all areas of the media, including music, television, and newspapers. Just a couple of weeks ago, the U.S. magazine Newsweek announced that, from the beginning of 2013, it would no longer appear in print form. Newsweek‘s announcement was tinged with regret: ‘Exiting print is a difficult moment for all of us’, their press release said. But at Macmillan, we take the opposite view: exiting print is a moment of liberation, because at last our dictionaries have found their ideal medium.”
Talking of all things print, Macmillan is a privately held company owned by Georg von Holtzbrinck Publishing Group headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany, and it’s in Germany that a great slaughtering of print has been taking place. The Frankfurter Rundschau daily newspaper filed for bankruptcy earlier this month, citing massive losses and falling circulation, the country’s second biggest news agency, DAPD, has filed for insolvency protection, and the impending closure of the FT Deutschland is a devastating blow to hundreds of its employees and the country’s business press. In The Sun Also Rises, Hemingway depicts a scene where one of the key characters, Mike Campbell, is asked, “How did you go bankrupt?” His response is “Gradually… then suddenly.”
“out of print” Macmillan Dictionary definition: “a book, magazine etc that is out of print is no longer being published”.