Flip the Model: Strategies for Creating and Delivering Value

Brian Mathews
2014 The journal of academic librarianship  
The Jazz Singer is arguably the most disruptive film of all time. Released in 1927, it launched the transition from the silent film era into the talkies. Much more than an incremental improvement, this musical introduced a radically new technology (synchronized dialogue) resulting in a game-changer for the film industry. While silent movies didn't disappear overnight, it was obvious that "living pictures" were the future of the box office. By the end of 1929 nearly all films were talkies
more » ... th & Quick, 1971 ). Consider the impact on the established order. The musical Singin' In the Rain (1952) depicts this critical point where movie stars from one era struggled to adapt in the new environment (Sunset Boulevard, 1950). Actors had to reinvent themselves, and many headliners simply could not adjust. The production side was similarly upended, demanding new processes and workflows. Sound engineers, technicians, screenwriters, and voice coaches were now in high demand. The industry's support infrastructure was transformed as well (Eyman, 1999) . Cinemas outfitted their buildings with new audio and projection systems. Studios developed new marketing and distribution models. Film critics altered criteria by which motion pictures were evaluated. The Academy Awards added additional categories. A new art form had emerged. Talkies opened creative possibilities that had previously been unavailable and even unimaginable. Academic libraries are encountering a similar inflection point. In our case it isn't a single technology that is disrupting our established system, but a barrage of advancements in publishing, pedagogy, and user preferences. Higher education itself is in trouble. Both Moody's and Standard and Poor's recently issued troubling outlooks for public and private institutions. The landscape is shifting around us, and the future of scholarship requires us to develop new skills, design new environments, and deliver new service capacities. In short, we need new models.
doi:10.1016/j.acalib.2013.09.004 fatcat:gtbkjzjaajhgxe4qj6p7kqgwsy