Give It Away?
October 8, 2000 9:03 PM   Subscribe

Give It Away? Seth Godin's book Idea Virus is available for free on his website, but the book is ranked #973 on the best-seller list (which means more than a few people are buying it anyway). Interesting...
posted by owillis (9 comments total)
Quote from a believer of this Idea Virus pap: "Permission Marketing and the Ideavirus are about as far as marketing can go from traditional marketing, and still be marketing. Yet it's still marketing. "


Only a marketing person would understand that paragraph.

posted by circumstance at 11:16 PM on October 8, 2000

My recent and brief and negative brush with Advertising Culture has forced me to hope that never oh never will I understand them. Nonetheless, in the hard-core research community, we have found that giving placing full-text books online has increased their sales.
posted by tranquileye at 7:53 AM on October 9, 2000

Hell, Bruce Eckel's Thinking in Java is ranked at #519, and the PDF has been available for free for over a year.
posted by harmful at 8:21 AM on October 9, 2000

Now that I've read a little of this, wow, just a weak rip of meme theory.
posted by tranquileye at 8:25 AM on October 9, 2000

So I'm curious how you could apply this phenom to things like the whole Napster fracas...
posted by owillis at 9:40 AM on October 9, 2000

ummm... The same way some of us have been saying that free copies have generated music sales since the days of cassettes? Or that non-copy-protected software drove copy-protected software off the market back in the 1980's? Or that music sales are growing faster than the economy at large, even though it's about as saturated a market as one can get?

Some more data points help, sure... But the handwriting has been on this particular wall for decades.

Not that anyone will believe it until an unsigned band comes to prominence solely on the basis of .mp3 downloads... but that day will come.

posted by aurelian at 3:02 PM on October 9, 2000

Just read a bit of the Java book. Looks like a worthwhile download. Assuming I can find out how to get a virtual machine (or whatever it is that I need to run Java programs. I am so out of touch).
posted by davidgentle at 9:21 PM on October 9, 2000

david: just download the development kit from and run the installer, and it'll setup everything you need.

Actually, depending on which OS you're running, it may even come with a JVM. I'm pretty sure 98 does, and IE will almost definetely install one on your machine.

I'd download the development kit anyway though, get the latest version. Whatever that is. I'm pretty out of touch myself. :-)
posted by cCranium at 5:59 AM on October 10, 2000

cCranium: Thanks. It is syphoning itself onto my hard drive as we speak. If I'd bothered to read the book properly I would have found it there.
posted by davidgentle at 5:34 PM on October 10, 2000

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