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CEOs Must Have API Literacy

With the release of the expanded Google Book Search application programming interface (API) presenting new opportunities and decisions for publishers, Adam Hodgin argues for API-literate CEOs:

Why does it matter whether your CEO knows what an API is? It matters because publishers (and newspaper owners, TV networks, film studios, content makers of all shapes) are not going to allow Google (YouTube, he she or ItTube, or anybody else) to manage and define the API which has access to their content. Having, or buying into, allying with, the API’s which manage and accesses your content may be the key decision for media companies in the next decade. Either your CEO knows what an API is, and can find out how, in strategic terms, to negotiate Google’s, Amazon’s, Facebook’s and Apple’s, or he/she needs to be a media genius who does it by gut instinct (Rupert Murdoch is the only one of those that I can think of and he is the wrong side of 70). The heads of Random House, Conde Nast, Elsevier, Cengage, Hachette and Pearson really ought to have an intuition about the way their business can develop an API to the servers which are hosting all their content. I wonder if any of them do?

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