February 13, 2015 Last Updated 10:56 am

Stefano Scatà Books: Italian photographer uses the Apple Newsstand to promote his work

When feeling a bit down about the world of publishing, a trip to the digital newsstands are sure to lead to the discovery of something wonderful to read and share

Every time I am at a loss to know what to write, either because of a lack of idea, or the state of depression I am in today following news the death of the NYT’s David Carr, I can turn to the digital newsstands to see something new.

Today, it was a joy to see a new digital magazine app inside the Apple Newsstand from the Italian photographer Stefano Scatà.

SS-iPad-splashStefano Scatà Books is an incredibly simple digital magazine app. In fact, it might even be unwise to call the app a digital magazine at all – it is that unique product that digital media can create, not quite a print magazine or a book or anything else.

What I love about the simply digital magazine app from Scatà is that it is the type of thing I share with friends and say “hey, did you see this? Take a look.”

StefanoScata-180My friend Dean Brierly, who I have known since Coolidge was president, and is the editor of the photography magazine Black & White, will get an email with the link the to app – you can count on that.

Stefano Scatà, his online biography states, was born in Pordenone and lives in Bassano del Grappa. His work has been featured in a number of books including Love Italian Food: Recipes for friends and family from a home, though it looks much of his work is better found in Italy (as you’d expect).

So this new Newsstand app is obviously designed to promote his work and hopefully get him more. Because of this, it is free to download and access. Also, it should be pointed out, the credits say the app was made by the web agency, nextbox.

SS-iPad-chefsThis is a common theme of late, most of the best new digital publications are coming from sources outside of the traditional magazine and newspaper business. The reason for this, I believe, is that the digital publishers involved in these new apps are thinking about how they can use a new platform to market themselves and their products, rather than how they can extend the reach of an older product. It is the difference between seeing digital publishing as an opportunity to create something new, rather than using it to keep something old alive.

Ironic, then, that this was the same situation photography found itself in with the rise of digital photography. While some established film photographers were eager to embrace digital, many hung on to film a long time before moving to digital. Film photography is not dead, is it – a lesson to be learned for publishers. Print publishing won’t die either. But will it be the leading format – or, like photography, will it be a small subset of the industry, used sparingly, but respected still as a great platform.

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