Tech Crunch TV: Eileen Gittins, CEO and Founder of Blurb

This interview with Eileen Gittins, CEO and founder of Blurb, just came out on Tech Crunch TV and is well worth the listen. Dreaming up then creating a company like Blurb is NOT an easy task, even in the age of instant everything. Eileen is a powerhouse, in addition to being a photographer and all around cool person, and her master plan, revealed here in this interview, is a testament to her ability to not only understand the present but also see well into the future.

Plus, she is my boss so you better leave comments or I’m going to hunt you down.


12 responses to “Tech Crunch TV: Eileen Gittins, CEO and Founder of Blurb”

  1. LionelB says:

    Two things. I can happily ignore e-books so it doesn’t bother me if they head off in that direction too. What would alarm me is if they drop paper altogether or narrow their range of papers, in the service of ‘margins’. That for me would violate the integrity of the project.
    I also hope that they don’t sell out [in both senses] to one of the voracious social media corporates. The notion of buying and selling customers is repugnant to me. Only slaves are traded.

    • Smogranch says:

      Lionel,

      I wouldn’t toss aside ebooks so casually, especially if you have any interest in sharing work with the other 2/3 of the world. In January I was in Peru, in the mountains, and came to a small indigenous village. Inside, huddled around a monitor were several small, Peruvian kids. I would imagine a physical book is nearly impossible to deliver in those parts, but they can, in one way, experience what you experienced via an ebook, IF that is your goal. There is no intention of dropping paper seeing as the company is based on the physical book. As for selling out, I’m not privy to that level of the process but the owner, as you can see, is a very talented and thoughtful person so whatever decision she makes I’m sure will have come after much debate. After all, she’s been approached before……
      Personally, I think if you use the internet, you are the product and are being bought and sold almost every time you engage online, especially if you use social media. You have large corporations on one side buying your social metric and the social media site on the other happily providing them the information….for a fee.

  2. LionelB says:

    I was thinking in terms of reading e-books but in terms of producing, yes that does make sense. I have to say that I warm to Eileen. It is just that the mega-corporations seem to think that the loyalty and integrity invested in smaller companies are things their money can buy. It upsets me to see that.

    • Smogranch says:

      Lionel,

      I hear ya. It’s a strange time, or maybe it was always a strange time. I think the e-book is still somewhat of a mystery.

  3. Mikael says:

    I think the problem with e-books is the fact that they are simply mimicking physical books in the different medium. I would rather just browse a clean slideshow of hires images on my tablet than browse something that is pretending to be a book with pageturns and white margins. I don’t need the nostalgy.

    E-book is a step backwards unless there actually is something “e” about the book. A good example of this is what Marvel is doing to e-comics.

    • Smogranch says:

      Mikael,

      I think you hit on a good topic. What is an ebook? Is it simply a copy of the physical book? Does it have audio and video and the like or do we have that already?

  4. Good interview.
    I ordered my first Blurb book in 2009 and as a book lover, the fact that companies like Blurb makes it possible for us to create print-on-demand self-published books is still so brilliant. Used to be I would look at a book thinking no way in hell will I ever be able to get something published. Hello Blurb and FBJ publishing.

    (Blurb wishlist, might as well: lie-flat binding, less glossy covers, PDF to ebook, more size variations of trade book like a horizontal and oh please optimize the code for the bookshow preview app, it is so slow)

  5. Sean says:

    The only thing that stops me clicking on the buy button more often is the shipping costs. Sure, in my case it has to cross the Pacific, but it’s still a little pricey. More often than not it costs as much as the book.

    But whenever I do I’m never disappointed.

  6. Paul Gero says:

    Danno…thanks for posting…would love to see them include an option for 6 color printing …

  7. Paul Gero says:

    She’s sharp…and she’s right…when a conventional author gets a pittance for a royalty, it IS a crime..

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