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Amazon vs. Hachette, an Epic Battle Faught with Letters and Addresses

Best Selling author Douglas Preston, along with 907 other authors, signed a letter that ran as a double full-page ad in yesterday’s print edition of the New York Times, asking Amazon to stop blocking or delaying the sale of books on their site as a tactic to lower the e-book prices that Amazon is charged by the publisher Hachette.* The three month dispute between Hachette and Amazon previously prompted a response by Amazon’s self-published authors and readers, but it took an odd turn Saturday night when Amazon posted this letter on a site called ReadersUnited.com, after sending it as an email to all of its Kindle Direct Publishing authors. In that letter they include Hachette’s CEO’s email, and have asked their KDP authors to write to Hachette’s CEO telling him what they think about cheaper ebooks. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan on Aug 11, 2014 - 146 comments

Kindle Unlimited

Amazon announced today a service called Kindle Unlimited, giving access to over 600,000 books and audiobooks (on any device) for $.9.99/month. There are other services similar that exist (like Scribd and Oyster), but Amazon may have an advantage with its audio service. Is it worth it? Perhaps if you are in the habit of buying more than the average five books per year. In any case, there's a 30 day free trial "so you can test your binge-reading capabilities before committing to pay for the service."
posted by SpacemanStix on Jul 18, 2014 - 68 comments

relentless.com

Is Amazon Bad For Books?
posted by the man of twists and turns on Feb 11, 2014 - 91 comments

Should a six-year-old be permitted to read Robert Caro?

The Perils of Precocity by Thomas Beller.
posted by xowie on Nov 1, 2013 - 59 comments

Amazon MatchBook

Amazon has announced that "MatchBook" will launch in October, allowing you to buy Kindle versions of select physical books you've purchased from Amazon, for $2.99 or less. The service will be retroactive to 1995. Reactions from TechHive, Time, and Engadget.
posted by NotMyselfRightNow on Sep 4, 2013 - 120 comments

So to recap, Amazon just MONETIZED FREAKING FANFIC.

Amazon introduces Kindle Worlds, allowing fanfic authors to profit from works based on settings and characters not their own. Kindle Worlds is set to roll out this summer. Don't dust off your classic Kirk/Spock opus just yet, though - at this point they're only working with properties owned by Warner Brothers' Alloy Entertainment (Gossip Girl, Pretty Little Liars, and Vampire Diaries). [more inside]
posted by robocop is bleeding on May 22, 2013 - 135 comments

Global Accessibility Awareness Day

Accessibility is what allows me to use things like a phone, computer, or an ATM. May 9th is all about this. -Tommy Edison, the Blind Film Critic. (previously)
Global Accessibility Awareness Day is today. It's a day to consider how people with disabilities experience the web, software, mobile devices, games and so on, targeted towards designers, developers, usability professionals and others without much experience with accessibility. There are public events scheduled all over the world, as well as other accessibility-related events. To participate on your own, try one of the suggested activities: turn off your mouse or trackpad and use only your keyboard to navigate websites, try using a free screen reader, such as NVDA for Windows or the built in VoiceOver for Mac and iOS, try watching some streaming videos or movies with captions or add some of your own to a video you've uploaded. Then relax with a sample of described video: Katniss, from the Hunger Games, goes hunting. [more inside]
posted by shirobara on May 9, 2013 - 10 comments

For eccentric book-lovers with beards and cats

"..it is refreshing to see Jason Merkoski, a leader of the team that built Amazon's first Kindle, dispense with the usual techo-utopianism and say, “I think we’ve made a proverbial pact with the devil in digitizing our words.” [more inside]
posted by stbalbach on Apr 9, 2013 - 90 comments

Ebook Index of Free Ebooks for the Kindle

Ebook Index of Free Ebooks for the Kindle [via mefi projects]
posted by aniola on Mar 9, 2013 - 43 comments

I don't want to set the world on fire/I just want to start a flame in your heart

Five years ago today Jeff Bezos’ Amazon.com released the Amazon Kindle, a move that would revolutionize the publishing industry. While often controversial, most recently for its international tax avoidance schemes, Amazon has been very successful and has made millions for its founder. What has Bezos done with some of his tax-free millions? Well for one, he launched and landed a rocket vertically, and posted the video to YouTube, just yesterday. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan on Nov 19, 2012 - 99 comments

Outlawed by Amazon DRM

Outlawed by Amazon DRM: A couple of days ago, my friend Linn sent me an e-mail, very frustrated: Amazon just closed her account and wiped her Kindle. Without notice. Without explanation. Leaving her without recourse. [via] [more inside]
posted by AceRock on Oct 22, 2012 - 98 comments

Bill Hill, digital typography and e-book pioneer, died Wednesday.

Bill Hill, digital typography and e-book pioneer, died Wednesday. A pioneer in using science to explain how our brains let us read, he was at Microsoft in the 1990s, and was one the inventors of ClearType, a technology for improving online reading on Windows. His passionate and entertaining lectures include Homo Sapiens 1.0 (transcript) which advocated that programmers need to learn as much about how their user's brains work rather than just OSes and programming languages, Why you only need one space after a period and the section of that talk on Why underlining hurts your brain. He died Wednesday from a heart attack.
posted by Berkun on Oct 20, 2012 - 42 comments

free & cheap ebooks

Books on the Knob, Pixel of Ink, and iReader Review are three blogs that feature free & bargain ebooks daily. If you want to start simple there's OpenCulture's 375 Free eBooks list but if you don't mind doing some footwork then there's this very comprehensive 614 Places for Free eBooks Online post (with divisions of content by genre) on Gizmo's Freeware. [more inside]
posted by flex on Oct 4, 2012 - 12 comments

Baby's on Fire

Following much speculation Amazon has refreshed the hardware for it's Kindle range, including the Kindle Paperwhite (featuring a "flattened out fibreoptic display") and an updated version of the sold out Kindle Fire and a new 8.9 Inch Kindle Fire HD. Earlier Kobo announced their new range, including a Kindle Fire like tablet. Between this, speculation that the Surface RT will have an astonishingly low price and rumors of a 7" iPad coming soon (probably to be announced sometime after Apple's September 12th iPhone 5 event) is the window of opportunity for stock Android tablets closing?
posted by Artw on Sep 6, 2012 - 249 comments

The Holy Grail of Publishing - Metrics!

Your e-book is reading you. How publishers are using e-books to gain valuable information about consumers.
posted by antonymous on Jul 2, 2012 - 69 comments

Imagine one percent, 129000 times

"Amazon’s markup of digital delivery to indie authors is ~129,000%" - author Andrew Hyde reviews the take for the most popular digital publishing platforms
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Jun 15, 2012 - 48 comments

Commuter Reading

What’s a Readlist? A group of web pages—articles, recipes, course materials, anything—bundled into an e-book you can send to your Kindle, iPad, or iPhone.
posted by netbros on May 23, 2012 - 43 comments

Apple and the Big Five

The U.S. has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Apple and five of the largest publishers, alleging a conspiracy to rig the pricing of e-books. Simon & Schuster, Hachette and HarperCollins have agreed to settle, though Macmillan, Penguin and Apple continue to contest the charges. Some background from WIRED: Bigger Than Agency, Bigger Than E-Books: The Case Against Apple and Publishers
posted by Artw on Apr 11, 2012 - 192 comments

Revenge Of The Fan Fic

One of the most popular stories on the Amazon Kindle marketplace is ...Wesley Crusher Slash Fic?. (i09)
posted by The Whelk on Mar 10, 2012 - 23 comments

Exercising the Power of Market Share

Last week, small press distributor Independent Publishers Group (IPG) announced that Amazon has decided to stop selling Kindle editions for the publishers IPG represents. The decision impacts over 500 small publishers and almost 5,000 Kindle titles. Neither party has offered much in the way of specifics, but other publishers have been reporting that Amazon has been pressuring them to offer higher discounts and/or pay a “co-op” fee of an additional 3%-4% on all sales to cover the cost of offering “automation and personalization” services (i.e. Customers who bought x also bought y). Authors and publishers have been reacting to the development.
posted by Toekneesan on Feb 28, 2012 - 51 comments

"Maybe I should finally mention WOOL..."

Hugh Howey was a self-published novelist of no real success. Until WOOL, that is - a 15,000 word "little throwaway story" he uploaded to Amazon's Kindle Marketplace one day and promptly forget about. The story he didn't blog, didn't tweet, and didn't even sell on his site hit #2 on the Kindle SciFi Bestseller list and "changed the course of e-books." [more inside]
posted by DarlingBri on Jan 15, 2012 - 140 comments

Amazon's Edsel

Tech pundits and consultants agree; Amazon's Kindle Fire is a huge disaster (New York Times), good for almost nothing (Marco Arment, creator of Instapaper) and a disappointingly poor user experience (Dr. Jakob Nielsen, usability expert). It's the Apple Newton, the Edsel, New Coke and McDonald’s Arch Deluxe in tablet form. By all accounts it should be doomed. So why is it selling so well? And why are user reviews so high? [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus on Dec 12, 2011 - 167 comments

What's black and white and red all over(drive)?

Why Might A Publisher Pull Its eBooks From Libraries? PaidContent takes a look at Penguin's recent move to pull all of its titles from Overdrive's public library ebook program, a program that even some librarians are upset about.
posted by Toekneesan on Nov 22, 2011 - 33 comments

Check it out!

Kindle Lending Library is now live. (discussed previously). The good news is there are lots of titles and no due dates. The bad news is that there is a one-per-month limit. Oh, and you have to be an Amazon Prime! member. Not everyone is thrilled.
posted by TwoToneRow on Nov 8, 2011 - 98 comments

New Amazon Tablet

Amazon unveils a new full color 7" multi-touch tablet it is calling Kindle Fire. Also announced are a new Kindle Touch and Kindle Touch 3G. [more inside]
posted by Ad hominem on Sep 28, 2011 - 239 comments

$2 a Word? Chump Change!

Byliner and The Atavist might be heralding a change in how and how much longform article authors are paid.
posted by reenum on Sep 20, 2011 - 14 comments

(The) Kindle

The Kindle is changing its name to ... Kindle. W(T)F?
posted by anothermug on Sep 13, 2011 - 160 comments

"My lower intestine is full of Spam, Egg, Spam, Bacon, Spam, Tomatoes, Spam."

Do you want some Spam with your Kindle? Spam has hit the Kindle, clogging the online bookstore of the top-selling eReader with material that is far from being book worthy and threatening to undermine Amazon.com Inc's publishing foray.
posted by Fizz on Jun 17, 2011 - 95 comments

Typography and the Kindle platform

Typography is about reading – and so are ebooks [via]
posted by Blazecock Pileon on May 30, 2011 - 65 comments

Ebooks overtake print books in Amazon sales

Like the death of Mark Twain, the demise of the printed book is greatly exaggerated, although the latest news from Amazon – which announced that it is selling more ebooks in America than print books for the first time – might suggest the nails are being readied for the coffin. [more inside]
posted by Trurl on May 19, 2011 - 137 comments

"It was a good thing to have a couple of thousand people all rigid and frozen together, in the palm of one's hand." - Charles Dickens

An E-Reader for Dickens: Designing a 19th-Century Kindle.
posted by Fizz on May 17, 2011 - 28 comments

Kindle Library Lending

Amazon has announced that library lending will be available on the Kindle later this year. Teaming with Overdrive, the program will start with 11,000 libraries in the United States. One of the key features touted by the company will be that users "can highlight and add margin notes to Kindle books you check out from your local library. Your notes will not show up when the next patron checks out the book. But if you check out the book again, or subsequently buy it, your notes will be there just as you left them." Could this be a possible death blow to the Nook?
posted by NotMyselfRightNow on Apr 20, 2011 - 94 comments

In the country of blinds, the one eyed men are kings.

"English As She Is Spoke is a broken Portuguese-to-English phrasebook written by two translators, José da Fonseca and Pedro Carolino. Sort of. You see, in reality, translator Pedro Carolino wanted to create a phrasebook on his own. Not knowing English, he took José da Fonseca’s French-to-English phrasebook and then used a Portuguese-to-French phrasebook to translate that. It’s sort of like what you and your friends do on Google Translate, but with a poor, mislead Portuguese man doing it by hand in candlelight." [more inside]
posted by item on Apr 18, 2011 - 52 comments

The "flipback", a new kind of book

A new kind of book has been created in Holland, where its sold over 1m copies since it came out in 2009. Now finding its way to England, called the "flipback", the pages are super thin Bible paper with a special lay-flat spine and small format, making it suitable for reading with one hand, thumb page-flips, and shirt pocket storage.
posted by stbalbach on Mar 21, 2011 - 63 comments

That's an awful nice box you got there.

Best-selling author Seth Godin has launched a challenge to traditional publishing with The Domino Project, the first publishing imprint to be powered by Amazon. [more inside]
posted by crackingdes on Mar 15, 2011 - 42 comments

Amanda Hocking, self-publisher

Amanda Hocking is 26 years old. She has 9 self-published books to her name, and sells 100,000+ copies of those ebooks per month. She has never been traditionally published. ... And it’s no stretch to say – at $3 per book/70% per sale for the Kindle store... there is no traditional publisher in the world right now that can offer Amanda Hocking terms that are better than what she’s currently getting, right now on the Kindle store, all on her own. (related)
posted by Joe Beese on Mar 1, 2011 - 244 comments

E-book piracy accelerates

With the success of the Kindle and iPad e-book piracy accelerates.
posted by stbalbach on Feb 21, 2011 - 178 comments

You are sitting in your chair, in front of you is a gray tablet that is not glowing.

Love interactive fiction? Love your Kindle? Have no net connection? Why not love them both at the same time offline!
posted by Cat Pie Hurts on Nov 14, 2010 - 12 comments

"I think the iPad redefines everything"

Perhaps I don’t have the allegiance to paper that I ought to because anybody who invests in The Absolute Sandman, all four volumes, is now carrying 40 pounds of paper and cardboard around with them. And they hurt and they complain, “Oh, I feel guilty.” And I look at it and go, you’re not getting anything that is quantitatively or qualitatively better than the experience you’d be getting on an iPad, where you can enlarge the pages, you can move it around, it’s following the eye, and you can flip the pages. - Neil Gaiman on digital comics. Will this be the year of comics readng devices, as comiXology CEO David Steinberger says? Comixology is certianly leading the way, announcing tools for independant comics creators that will allow them to publish their comics via the comixology store, complete with the "guided views" which are a core part of their viewing experience. One creator who is full embracing digital is Alex De Campi, whose Napoleonic comic Valentine is not only published across a range of devices (iOs, Epub, Android, Kindle) but also in 14 languages, something that would have been difficult-to-impossible otherwise. Previous digital comics, Comixology suggestions
posted by Artw on Oct 17, 2010 - 47 comments

Interactive Text Adventure for Your Kindle/E-Book Reader

The web browser on the Kindle may not be the slickest piece of software in the world, barely sufficing for checking email and basic surfing, but there's one thing it excels at: web-based text adventures. Turn on your wireless connection, peck out PortableQuest.com on those tiny little keys and prepare for a game of adventure, danger, and low cunning. (You can play without a kindle as well.) [created by edman, via mefi projects]
posted by Vectorcon Systems on Oct 6, 2010 - 13 comments

A Kindle, iPad and printed book are magnified 400x

A Kindle, iPad and printed book are magnified 400x.
posted by stbalbach on Aug 17, 2010 - 55 comments

Kindle popular

Amazon is sharing the books and passages that Kindle readers highlight the most. [more inside]
posted by AceRock on May 4, 2010 - 81 comments

Legality and Ethics in downloading e-books

On the ethics of illegally downloading e-books; a Teleread essay full of interesting links about these modern e-reading times. Inspired in part by this New York Times Ethicist column, and brought to my attention by this ask.metafilter question.
posted by Greg Nog on Apr 7, 2010 - 159 comments

"When elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers." — Kikuyu proverb

The announcement of the iPad earlier this week has prompted a lot of discussion about ebook prices among publishers and their sales partners. That discussion took a major turn yesterday when Amazon pulled the buy buttons for Macmillan's books off their site. Many of Macmillan's titles are still available through Amazon, but only through third parties. Right now, one of the largest publishers in America is no longer available from Amazon because they can not agree on ebook prices. [more inside]
posted by Toekneesan on Jan 30, 2010 - 306 comments

Anyone who claims that readers can’t and won’t and shouldn’t own their books are bent on the destruction of the book, the destruction of publishing, and the destruction of authorship itself.

How to Destroy the Book. "The anti-copyright activists have no respect for our copyright and our books. They say that when you buy an ebook or an audiobook that’s delivered digitally, you are demoted from an owner to a licensor." (Previously).
posted by Lobster Garden on Dec 29, 2009 - 203 comments

1984

Kindle goes all 1984 on Orwell Unbelievably, amazon.com has deleted all copies of 1984 and Animal Farm from the Kindle and other ebook platforms.. How could they not see the irony?
posted by batboy on Jul 17, 2009 - 187 comments

How Much Is The Fine When It's Overdue?

Kindle is coming soon to a library near you. Amazon is sending mixed messages about the concept. Librarians are having an online conference to the discuss the issues.
posted by Xurando on Jul 10, 2009 - 61 comments

Authors Can Autograph It

To Marty, This bespells doom! A recent reading in Manhattan at the Strand bookstore by David Sedaris, whose most recent book is “When You Are Engulfed in Flames,” may have offered a glimpse of the future. A man named Marty who had waited in the book-signing line presented his Kindle, on the back of which Mr. Sedaris, in mock horror, wrote, “This bespells doom.” (The signed Kindle was photographed, but its owner’s full name is unknown.)
posted by Fizz on Jun 16, 2009 - 53 comments

19th, 20th Century Private Collection Bookplates

Kindle seems to be on the way to marginalizing books. In memoriam, 19th and 20th century Bookplates from the Pratt Libraries Bookplate Collection.
posted by wallstreet1929 on May 16, 2009 - 67 comments

That'll be five bucks, please.

With Rupert Murdoch planning to start charging for access to some of the content of his newspaper's websites is this the end of the age of free? But will it rescue the newspaper industry? Or is the Kindle or other ebook reader the answer? And if free news on the web is unsustainable from advertising what about YouTube, Twitter and Facebook?
posted by fearfulsymmetry on May 10, 2009 - 31 comments

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