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(Salon)   "I knew Amazon was evil and is killing bookstores. Then, I got a Kindle...and suddenly, I loved Amazon"   (salon.com) divider line 220
    More: Obvious, Amazon, Kindle  
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9305 clicks; posted to Main » on 18 Nov 2012 at 1:03 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-18 10:46:55 AM
FTFA: This drives many independent bookstores-which rely on profits to stay afloat-out of business, taking with them the entire culture of book buying I value

Businesses rely on profits to stay afloat? You don't say!
 
2012-11-18 10:55:44 AM

Arthur Jumbles: FTFA: This drives many independent bookstores-which rely on profits to stay afloat-out of business, taking with them the entire culture of book buying I value

Businesses rely on profits to stay afloat? You don't say!


Oh, wow. I was just coming in here to gripe about that sentence.
 
2012-11-18 11:01:34 AM
E-ink is what matters.

Not nook, or Kindle (Nook person myself)

E-Ink means massive portability and reading on the go.

I love books, and always will... Will E-Ink Kill books? fark no.

But it will mean there will be less printed books in the future, rather then doing a run of 100,000. It will be a print run of half that. There will likely always be printed books.

Now, E-Ink Books need to start coming down in price. 14.99 for a new E-book on release because the hardcover is 16.... fark you, I'll pirate it, or just wait for the paper back price at least.

Publishers are again. clueless much like music labels, and Movie industry are.
 
2012-11-18 11:17:51 AM

Shostie: Arthur Jumbles: FTFA: This drives many independent bookstores-which rely on profits to stay afloat-out of business, taking with them the entire culture of book buying I value

Businesses rely on profits to stay afloat? You don't say!

Oh, wow. I was just coming in here to gripe about that sentence.


The government should step in and provide this profit thingy so they can continue to provide their valuable services.
 
2012-11-18 11:19:34 AM
I love my Kindle. I find it easier on my eyes than books, and much more convenient.

But for the love of Guttenberg, how hard could it be to run a spell checker on Kindle files?
 
2012-11-18 11:27:56 AM

mr_a: I love my Kindle. I find it easier on my eyes than books, and much more convenient.

But for the love of Guttenberg, how hard could it be to run a spell checker on Kindle files?


A lot of Kindle books are crap. Poorly written, poorly edited, poorly formatted. That's the tragedy of removing the gatekeeper.

However, if you sample liberally before you buy, you can usually avoid the stinkers. As an author myself , I'll sample any book I see. I just send them to my phone and see what I'm dealing with. I've found some really excellent books for really cheap; you just have to have the patience to discard 80% of what you sample in order to find the gems.
 
2012-11-18 11:28:04 AM

Arthur Jumbles: FTFA: This drives many independent bookstores-which rely on profits to stay afloat-out of business, taking with them the entire culture of book buying I value

Businesses rely on profits to stay afloat? You don't say!


Unless they're too big to fail, of course.
 
2012-11-18 11:29:24 AM
I've read a few books on my iPad, but I really just can't stay focused on them. Maybe it's what I've read, but I find it much easier to sit and plow through 100 pages of a bound book than an e-book.
 
2012-11-18 11:30:10 AM
For you E-Reader Folks, if you don't have Calibre on your PC you are doing yourself a great disservice.


One of the Simple and best things Calibre does for me is to convert just about anything into Epub for my Nook. Texts, Docs, PDFs, etc...
It can also convert entire Comic book reader files into Epub so I can now read comics and manga on my nook.


http://calibre-ebook.com/ 

http://calibre-ebook.com/about
 
2012-11-18 11:32:55 AM

kronicfeld: I've read a few books on my iPad, but I really just can't stay focused on them. Maybe it's what I've read, but I find it much easier to sit and plow through 100 pages of a bound book than an e-book.


Ipad, huh? Well there is your problem friend.

E-Ink is different from LCD Tech. Its far easier on the eyes. I cant read long bits of texts on my PC, or Phone, but on my nook, not a problem.
 
2012-11-18 11:36:00 AM
I still buy hardcovers, but damn do I love my Kindle Fire. It is, as mr_a said, easier to read than a regular book. And I find myself reading books a lot quicker on the Kindle than I did when I was holding a book. I didn't think I was going to like it, so when my parents got me one last year for Christmas, I was hesitant. Now that thing is one of the most important pieces of electronics in my home. My wife also uses it to read, and I'll eventually get her her own (or get myself a new HD).
 
2012-11-18 11:55:00 AM

Shostie: Arthur Jumbles: FTFA: This drives many independent bookstores-which rely on profits to stay afloat-out of business, taking with them the entire culture of book buying I value

Businesses rely on profits to stay afloat? You don't say!

Oh, wow. I was just coming in here to gripe about that sentence.


Guys, he was countering the assumption that Amazon doesn't rely on profits when it sells books at a loss, which gives it an unfair advantage in the book selling game.
 
2012-11-18 11:56:43 AM
The fact that I no longer have to waste time flipping pages with my Kindle has meant that my reading speed is dramatically quicker.
 
2012-11-18 12:05:20 PM

kronicfeld: I've read a few books on my iPad, but I really just can't stay focused on them. Maybe it's what I've read, but I find it much easier to sit and plow through 100 pages of a bound book than an e-book.


Same here. I bought a 7-inch tablet thinking I'd read a lot more books. Meh. Here I am surfing Fark with it. I'd much rather read a paperback.
 
2012-11-18 12:30:14 PM
See, I can't throw support behind a device that will allow someone to delete books I paid for on a whim.

No one will be deleting my paperback copy of a novel because some bullshiat terms of service changed or a licensing agreement ran out.
 
2012-11-18 12:31:32 PM

Raharu: Publishers are again. clueless much like music labels, and Movie industry are.


Not all publishers. Many small publishers have a handle on this.

/ Owns a publishing company.

// All our ebooks are $4.99
 
2012-11-18 12:40:41 PM
I honestly prefer the Kindle App on my iPad to my actual Kindle.
 
2012-11-18 12:40:51 PM
Screw the "independent book stores!" Everyone forgets that they did the same damn thing to us...

SIgned,

A former independent cuneiform store owner.
 
2012-11-18 12:43:02 PM

alkhemy: Raharu: Publishers are again. clueless much like music labels, and Movie industry are.

Not all publishers. Many small publishers have a handle on this.

/ Owns a publishing company.

// All our ebooks are $4.99


Links please! I love affordable Ebooks!


Baen is another company that knows how this ebook think should work, they also have affordable prices
 
2012-11-18 01:01:47 PM
Something's missing

www.mimifroufrou.com
 
2012-11-18 01:12:02 PM
I still prefer my media in the form of stone tablets, so I'm a part of the problem.
 
2012-11-18 01:12:46 PM
Disclosure: I manage a used book store that's perpetually on the verge of going out of business.

Amazon is not why bookstores go out of business. Mismanagement of bookstores and the idiocy of the US publishing industry are among the top reasons that bookstores go out of business. Amazon is terrible in many, many, many ways, as anyone bright who shops with them frequently will notice, but that's beside the point. And they stay in business because they're very convenient and have few real competitors.

Ebooks are also not why bookstores go out of business. That said, current e-readers are terrible -- their design is driven by marketing crap, not technology or usability, and consumers will continue to get stuck with crap readers if they never hold out for something better. In fact, the trend that seems likely is that tablet computers will eat the reader market whole, and a few years from now you'll be slightly embarrassed to admit that you shelled out actual money for a Nook or Kindle.

I never liked Steve Jobs, but if he were still alive very few people would be buying a Nook or Kindle. Or paying as much as $5 for a typical ebook. I'm just saying.
 
2012-11-18 01:13:08 PM
I love my Kindle 2. It's invaluable on trips. I also love that it isn't an LCD screen, I can read in direct sunlight, and I don't have screen flicker to worry about either. I just wish the PDF support was better.
 
2012-11-18 01:14:27 PM

RandomAxe: Disclosure: I manage a used book store that's perpetually on the verge of going out of business.

Amazon is not why bookstores go out of business. Mismanagement of bookstores and the idiocy of the US publishing industry are among the top reasons that bookstores go out of business. Amazon is terrible in many, many, many ways, as anyone bright who shops with them frequently will notice, but that's beside the point. And they stay in business because they're very convenient and have few real competitors.

Ebooks are also not why bookstores go out of business. That said, current e-readers are terrible -- their design is driven by marketing crap, not technology or usability, and consumers will continue to get stuck with crap readers if they never hold out for something better. In fact, the trend that seems likely is that tablet computers will eat the reader market whole, and a few years from now you'll be slightly embarrassed to admit that you shelled out actual money for a Nook or Kindle.

I never liked Steve Jobs, but if he were still alive very few people would be buying a Nook or Kindle. Or paying as much as $5 for a typical ebook. I'm just saying.


I disagree, I have no interest in a tablet, I have a laptop with a real keyboard and that I can hook a real mouse into. I also don't want to read long things on anything that's backlit, it sucks.
 
2012-11-18 01:16:26 PM
I disagree, I have no interest in a tablet

I also have no interest in a tablet, but I still think the tablet market will swallow up the reader market.
 
2012-11-18 01:16:31 PM
Meh, I like my kindle for traveling or for $2 novels, but there's nothing like sitting down with a real book at night. They're two totally different experiences; like listening to music on MP3 and live in concert. I pay city taxes of around $100 a year towards the public library, and if i bought every book I borrowed from them I'd be spending easy five times that on books, most of which you only read once. They both have a place, and they both have pros and cons.
 
2012-11-18 01:17:02 PM

DamnYankees: I honestly prefer the Kindle App on my iPad to my actual Kindle.


Me, too except for the lack of folders.
 
2012-11-18 01:17:55 PM
For that matter, I should add that far superior e-ink technology has existed for well over a decade now. Commercially available readers are really crappy. Never mind that they ought to be full computers; their displays should be capable of very nice full-motion video, and at about the same price point.
 
2012-11-18 01:18:42 PM

RandomAxe: Disclosure: I manage a used book store that's perpetually on the verge of going out of business.

Amazon is not why bookstores go out of business. Mismanagement of bookstores and the idiocy of the US publishing industry are among the top reasons that bookstores go out of business. Amazon is terrible in many, many, many ways, as anyone bright who shops with them frequently will notice, but that's beside the point. And they stay in business because they're very convenient and have few real competitors.

Ebooks are also not why bookstores go out of business. That said, current e-readers are terrible -- their design is driven by marketing crap, not technology or usability, and consumers will continue to get stuck with crap readers if they never hold out for something better. In fact, the trend that seems likely is that tablet computers will eat the reader market whole, and a few years from now you'll be slightly embarrassed to admit that you shelled out actual money for a Nook or Kindle.

I never liked Steve Jobs, but if he were still alive very few people would be buying a Nook or Kindle. Or paying as much as $5 for a typical ebook. I'm just saying.


You're right - we would all be paying $12.99 for a book from Apple's bookstore then a few years later, an additional $2.99 to make it DRM free.
 
2012-11-18 01:19:49 PM

Girion47: I disagree, I have no interest in a tablet, I have a laptop with a real keyboard and that I can hook a real mouse into. I also don't want to read long things on anything that's backlit, it sucks.


This.

E-Ink is easy on the eyes, and color is around the corner.
 
2012-11-18 01:19:54 PM
I have a nook, but I still prefer real paper books. eBook prices are far too high, oftentimes very close to the price of a real physical book.

My preference overall is still the library. I can just log onto my county library site, request the book I want, and depending on if it has to be transported from another branch or not, walk in anytime from an hour to three days later to pick it up at the counter, all for free. It's a beautiful thing.
 
2012-11-18 01:21:00 PM
Kindle is a fantastic device as far as I m concerned. At any moment of the day when boredom strikes I need merely ease out my kindle from my butt pocket and nearly 1,000 books are within the reach of my stubby digits. Love it, even have a special plastic bag to allow bath time reading.
As for paying amazon their exorbitant prices, a few moments perusing any decent torrent site and you can have all the books your heart desires, scott free, aaarrrrrrggggghhh a pirates life for me.
 
2012-11-18 01:21:25 PM
I predict that when they finally develop the Orgasmatron, the publishing and motion picture industries will be given last rites.
 
2012-11-18 01:21:51 PM

TuteTibiImperes: I have a nook, but I still prefer real paper books. eBook prices are far too high, oftentimes very close to the price of a real physical book.

My preference overall is still the library. I can just log onto my county library site, request the book I want, and depending on if it has to be transported from another branch or not, walk in anytime from an hour to three days later to pick it up at the counter, all for free. It's a beautiful thing.


I do the same thing, with my Nook. Most Libraries are also featuring Epub copies of books.
 
2012-11-18 01:21:51 PM
FTA: Is Amazon the lessor of these two evils?

You call yourself a writer???
 
2012-11-18 01:22:10 PM

TuteTibiImperes: I have a nook, but I still prefer real paper books. eBook prices are far too high, oftentimes very close to the price of a real physical book.

My preference overall is still the library. I can just log onto my county library site, request the book I want, and depending on if it has to be transported from another branch or not, walk in anytime from an hour to three days later to pick it up at the counter, all for free. It's a beautiful thing.


That's why I pirate. The only problem is getting files converted to work on my Kindle in a format I can read it. Even harder is getting the file names to be searchable on the Kindle menu. If it's part of a series I've found I'll have 3-5 files that all start the same and I can't tell the book unless I open it and back out.
 
2012-11-18 01:22:34 PM

Toshiro Mifune's Letter Opener: I still prefer my media in the form of stone tablets, so I'm a part of the problem.


Pipe down, Moses.
 
2012-11-18 01:23:58 PM
Anybody have informed opinions of the Kobo ereader?

I hate the way Kindle is chained to Amazon content. Yes, I know there are workarounds. But the average user has no idea how that stuff works and always pays the Amazon premium.

My local independent bookstore is offering Kobo books, and I will always buy from them if possible.
 
2012-11-18 01:23:59 PM

Girion47: TuteTibiImperes: I have a nook, but I still prefer real paper books. eBook prices are far too high, oftentimes very close to the price of a real physical book.

My preference overall is still the library. I can just log onto my county library site, request the book I want, and depending on if it has to be transported from another branch or not, walk in anytime from an hour to three days later to pick it up at the counter, all for free. It's a beautiful thing.

That's why I pirate. The only problem is getting files converted to work on my Kindle in a format I can read it. Even harder is getting the file names to be searchable on the Kindle menu. If it's part of a series I've found I'll have 3-5 files that all start the same and I can't tell the book unless I open it and back out.


Calibre.
http://calibre-ebook.com/
http://calibre-ebook.com/
http://calibre-ebook.com/
 
2012-11-18 01:24:10 PM
buttcat: You're right - we would all be paying $12.99 for a book from Apple's bookstore then a few years later, an additional $2.99 to make it DRM free.

Well, it's optimistic of me, but I think that competition and greed would keep the ebook prices lower.

On the other hand, I don't believe you'd be able to actually own the ebooks, so I don't think there'd be that DRM-free option. My guess is that we'd have switched to a system where you explicitly lease access to the content for a set time (a year or less, most likely) and then have to 'buy' it all over again if you want it again or for longer. A prostitute's a prostitute, after all.
 
2012-11-18 01:24:54 PM
We are still in the infancy of digital content. The large publishers are still holding most of the cards. Amazon is actually one of the better ones as individuals can sell their own books without a publishing contract.
 
2012-11-18 01:24:56 PM
Kill the "new book"s stores,
and save the used books stores.
 
2012-11-18 01:25:22 PM

jaytkay: Anybody have informed opinions of the Kobo ereader?

I hate the way Kindle is chained to Amazon content. Yes, I know there are workarounds. But the average user has no idea how that stuff works and always pays the Amazon premium.

My local independent bookstore is offering Kobo books, and I will always buy from them if possible.


Kobo is not bad but its not great either.

Go Nook, It reads Epub (Which is the universal standard everyone but amazon uses). You can use the B&N, Pirate, or other Ebook stores, like Baen and such.

Also did I mention Calibre... I think I may have.
 
2012-11-18 01:26:35 PM
Meanwhile, I'm stuck in the past because I'd rather not throw down a hundred or so on an e-reader for the privilege of then renting books at full price.
 
2012-11-18 01:27:32 PM

mr_a: I love my Kindle. I find it easier on my eyes than books, and much more convenient.

But for the love of Guttenberg, how hard could it be to run a spell checker on Kindle files?


I recently bought "The Picture of Dorian Gray" from Google Play. In the book his name is continuously misspelled as Dorian Cray, among other mistakes in the text. Google would not refund my money.
 
2012-11-18 01:28:16 PM

TuteTibiImperes: I have a nook, but I still prefer real paper books. eBook prices are far too high, oftentimes very close to the price of a real physical book.

My preference overall is still the library. I can just log onto my county library site, request the book I want, and depending on if it has to be transported from another branch or not, walk in anytime from an hour to three days later to pick it up at the counter, all for free. It's a beautiful thing.


My library has ebook lending capability.
 
2012-11-18 01:28:16 PM

Raharu: TuteTibiImperes: I have a nook, but I still prefer real paper books. eBook prices are far too high, oftentimes very close to the price of a real physical book.

My preference overall is still the library. I can just log onto my county library site, request the book I want, and depending on if it has to be transported from another branch or not, walk in anytime from an hour to three days later to pick it up at the counter, all for free. It's a beautiful thing.

I do the same thing, with my Nook. Most Libraries are also featuring Epub copies of books.


Mine does as well, and if the ePub is the only copy available, I'll take it, but I still prefer real physical books to using the ereader.

I've found the trick is to request the next book I want about a week before I finish reading the one I'm on, that way I don't actually have to wait in case they need to do an ILL to get the new book.
 
2012-11-18 01:28:20 PM
All_Farked_Up: Amazon is actually one of the better ones as individuals can sell their own books without a publishing contract.

Yes, but this is ridiculous on its face. You ought to be able to buy content directly from the individuals, online, or through any licensed third-party merchant. Piracy is obviously an issue, but proprietary formats that consumers are slaved to are bullshiat. Kindle owners, for instance, generally don't realize how they've tied their genitals to Amazon until Amazon decides to drive off in a huff.
 
2012-11-18 01:30:06 PM

Arthur Jumbles: FTFA: This drives many independent bookstores-which rely on profits to stay afloat-out of business, taking with them the entire culture of book buying I value

Businesses rely on profits to stay afloat? You don't say!


Normally I would complain about that, too, but the author's argument is that Amazon can afford to sell hardcopy books at a loss in order to drive brick-and-mortar competition out of business. In this case, the statement that the independent booksellers need to sell at a profit is a relevant distinction.
 
2012-11-18 01:30:13 PM
The only real problem, to my mind, is the fact that as electronics squish older things (like books) into tiny reservations of decoration and collection they contribute (in a tiny, tiny way) to the problem we still haven't solved. I.e. energy economics.

We're still burning extra-finite resources to power this stuff and we don't have controllable fusion or widespread green.

Though from what I understand a lot of e-readers could probably run on little tiny solar panels as well as those cheap-o solar powered calculators do.
 
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