The end of an æra!

We’re sure it wasn’t the æ that did it but Enclopædia Brittanica have announced, via their blog,  that they are discontinuing their print version after 244 years. In future they will be 100% digital.

Whilst comparisons are odious here are two versions of their history:

and to be fair here are the two Wikipedia entries:

Their trademarks include the thistle as well as Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Macropædia, Micropædia, and Propædia.

Volume US sales peaked after World War II at around 120,000 per annum.  At one time the full volumes (currently 32) cost over $1,300 but now an annual subscription is around $70 (£50 in the UK).  You can also currently get a 3 volume replica set of the 1768 version for £69.

Britannica have announced that for the next week from yesterday online access is free.

From a very brief run around their site we found navigation not particularly easy (again attempting to be even handed this maybe partially due to the fact that we are very used to Wikipedia). The site monetisation/ads we found excessive.

Content is where historically it has excelled.

Britannica is on:

 Update 3pm GMT – Couple of Britannica infographics from their blog

Click to enlarge

We have no affiliate marketing arrangements with Britannica.

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