If you want to write a book but don’t want to distribute it, you can save your masterpiece on a disk and send it to a publishing house. In just two hours, the book you want will be sent to you. This is called instant publishing.
If you find any mistakes in a book published in Shanghai, just go to the website of the publishing house: www.ewen.cc, and offer your suggestions. The publishing house will make the changes immediately. This is called interactive publishing.
If you are extremely busy or if you simply want to avoid going to the publishing house to buy its latest books, just go to the shopping channel: www.ewen.cc, and take a good look at the books that interest you. You can check out their covers, binding, layout, contents and prices right in the comfort of your home, and you can actually bargain online.
If you are a school principal or head of an e-community, and want to bring in more books to your local area network but pay less, just make a booklist and wait for the publishing house to send you the electronic books, or e-books, at 1/4 to 1/3 of the price you would pay for a hard-copy book.
These are not scenes from a science fiction movie; these developments are real, and are part of the present, not the future. Since the Shanghai Digital Century Network Co.—www.ewen.cc—jointly run by the Shanghai Century Publishing Group, Shanghai Xinhui Disk Group and Shanghai United Investment Ltd. Co. became publicly available, digital publishing in Shanghai has taken off.
As the first large commercial publishing website, www.ewen.cc will combine traditional advantages of a publishing house with modern science and technology to promote digital publishing and the construction of a digital library.
Apart from online publishing, the website also provides an information service and e-commerce. As key technology about digital copyright protection laws has broken through, online publishing and digital book sales have come true.
It also offers online dictionaries, including a 50-million-word Chinese Dictionary, a 40-million-word General History of Chinese Culture, and the Archaic Chinese Dictionary.
(Beijing Review 08/24/2001)