January 21, 2014 | 6:16 pm
I was clicking around links from my post about Steven Zacharius earlier today when I happened onto something amusing. Or, at least, amusing to me. Back in April of 2012, when John Sargent made his defiant post declaring Macmillan would not settle with the Department of Justice, he posted it via the Tor.com blog, with a link to a website called “Macmillan Speaks” for people who wanted to leave comments.
The funny thing is, when I go to Macmillan Speaks now, all I see is that one, single solidary post from 21 months ago. Even his post surrendering to the inevitable and announcing Macmillan would settle after all, 10 months later, is not on that site—to say nothing of any further discussion of the state of the publisher, things it’s doing that it would like the public to know about, and so on. The post doesn’t even have comments enabled anymore, and going by Archive.org the last one it received was in May or June of 2012.
So, that’s one statement from John Sargent, a closed discussion, and nothing more for almost two years. The name of the site might better be “Macmillan Speaks, Once, and Then Falls Silent Forevermore.”
So let’s hear it for John Sargent, head of one of of the Big Five nee Six publishers, and his idea of public outreach. Not exactly surprising, I suppose, from a man who so rarely seems to care what consumers think.