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UK Publisher to Cease Printing Dictionaries

November 6, 2012  By

Oxford, UK-based Macmillan Education announced it will stop producing printed dictionaries after the final edition rolls off the presses this month. Since 2009, the company has started to transition users to its Macmillan Dictionary Online service.
“The traditional book format is very limiting for any kind of reference work,” said Editor-in-Chief Michael Rundell. “Books are out of date as soon as they’re printed, and the space constraints they impose often compromise our goals of clarity and completeness. There is so much more we can do for our users in digital media.”
“Our research tells us that most people today get their reference information via their computer, tablet, or phone,” added Stephen Bullon, Macmillan Education’s Publisher for Dictionaries, “and the message is clear and unambiguous: the future of the dictionary is digital.”
This news from Macmillan follows a March announcement from the venerable Encyclopedia Britannica that, after 244 years, it will no longer produce a print edition. The Oxford English Dictionary, seen by some as the definitive record of the English language, is still available for purchase as a 20-volume complete set or as a single-volume compact edition.


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