Fresh off a buzz-generating appearance at the recent Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the enterprise and consumer electronics firm DMC Worldwide is in New York City showing off Copia, a new Web site offering a reading social network platform and e-commerce that includes a suite of linked digital reading devices set to hit the market this spring. DMC stopped by the Publishers Weekly offices to demo its social reading platform in advance of its presentation at O’Reilly’s Tools of Change conference set to open next week.
DMC is a 50-year-old private firm looking to invest in, produce, and market new consumer technologies. DMC Worldwide senior v-p Anthony Antolino said that Copia is the result of the company’s long-term examination of “emerging markets, content consumption, and what makes consumers tick.” Antolino described Copia as a “social reading platform that combines all kinds of content—books, movies, comics, music—and collaborative tools that let people read and enjoy books together, and, of course, it offers commerce.”
The hub of the Copia network/device venture is the social network, a Web-based platform that is free to consumers. It will launch a limited beta in March and a public beta by the summer. Antolino said that Copia offers a distinctive online graphical display as well as a search infrastructure that allows readers to discuss and compare books, but that also attempts to visually recreate book browsing. While Copia offers the usual social networking functionally—connections with like-minded readers; title and subject-focused discussion groups; the ability to compare book lists—the site offers its own nifty and intuitive ways to do so. (read more)