Book publisher Penguin is set to launch a social network for young people, in an effort to keep them interested in reading.
The Spinebreakers website, is already in existence as a content site but users are unable to communicate with each other about their shared past time. Instead the site is used as an area in which teenagers can write about books they have read and their authors.
However, the Spinebreakers site is set to undergo a complete overhaul and the new site for teenage bookworms will have a new interactive website design. Anna Rafferty managing director of Penguin Digital founded the Spinebreakers site three years ago.
“I set up the site as I felt there were fewer and fewer places talking about books in a way which appealed to teenagers. However, I knew in order for the site to work, it would have to be written and edited by teenagers- which is why we have over 100 deputy editors aged between 14 and 18 looking after the site and many more contributors of a similar age,” she told The Telegraph.
“However, they cannot use the site to communicate, which is why I want to transform the site into the first social network dedicated to books,” she added.
Rafferty revealed the site transformation is expected to take place within the next six months and said the re-launch would be highly publicised as the company had not “shouted enough” about the original Spinebreakers site, even though it attracts between 10 and 15,000 unique users each month.
“There are too many distractions out there for teenagers which pushes reading down the list of hobbies, which is why I hope giving reading its own social network which is written and edited by teenagers, will help keep reading relevant in the digital age,” she added.