A publisher provides commercial printing services, marketing and distribution of newspapers, magazines, books, literary works, and other similar works dealing with information. A work gets legal significance once it gets published. For example in copyright cases, there is a difference in the protection of published and unpublished works.
In order to get works published, established authors are represented by literary agents to market their work to publishers and negotiate contracts. These agents are paid from the author’s earnings. After a publisher accepts a work, the publisher negotiates the purchase of intellectual rights on the work with the author and the parties agree on royalty rates.
The amount of design required depends on the type of book being published. A publisher has to ensure there are no errors in the material being published, by ways of editing, proofreading. Usually the publisher controls the advertising and other marketing tasks. Sometimes various aspects of the process are subcontracted to specialist publisher marketing agencies.
Newspaper and magazine companies still own printing presses and binderies. But book publishers usually do not own any. Similarly, the publishers usually sell the finished products through a distributor who stores and distributes the publisher’s products for a percentage fee or sells on a sale or return basis. For the purposes of copyright, a publisher is the owner of the copyrighted work.