14 February 2008

How publishing works in China

In China, the state still controls book content. For instance, the word "Dalai Lama" is not allowed to appear in print. However, with tens of thousands of books being printed annually, they do not have every book pass through a censor's hand its seems. Instead, they use a distributed control system which is organized around the ISBN number, or what they call the "Book Number" in China. Certain publishers, many are related to universities or are older and established, are given the right to assign ISBNs, and by doing so they vouch for the political correctness of the book. Independent publishers partner with the book number provider. So, you will see Krishnamurti books in China under the imprints of Eastern China Normal University Press or Shenzhen Press. But the people that Krishnamurti Publications deals with to make these books happen are really not very related to these organizations. They are independent editors, some times with very small teams, who create a kind of independent publishing community.

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