Originally Posted by Steve Jordan
Amazon can only control a publisher's use of the Kindle format. To that end, I believe they specify that you can't sell a Kindle edition for less at another site. The agreement says nothing about other formats, however, so you are still fre to sell those other formats at any price you choose, on any site.
Ahhhh...OK, so that makes sense...then still we are all under the control of the rat bastage publishers? So now I wonder if under the agreement Amazon is even allowed to license their Kindle format to other device mfg's? Port them over to the more standard Mobipocket? (not saying Mobipocket is a standard or such...just there are more readers that can manage the format and Amazon owns it too, right?) I have no clue what format is best just know PDF ain't it for the most part...
Where I am obviously heading is the lack of any standard format for ebooks. I am not unhappy with the cost for most of the books I would read...$3-$5/book is FINE and would be better if the writer was getting the lion share of the funds. But it is still that pesky cost of the devices themselves to other devices then the Kindle that will stifle any sort of pricing competition.
That coupled with the small...well, minuscule....number of books actually out there in ANY ebook format. I would kill for the ability to get all the Edward Abbey's works for example...heck even some of the more entertaining "Little Fuzzy" series by H. Beam Piper...and good luck finding any of George Alec Effinger Budayeen series...just a few of my niche favs that I seriously doubt will ever be had anywhere but that "dark net" during my life time.
So I really guess I was saying that it seems to me until there is a more widely available device independent format (DRM'd is FINE with me) there cannot be a price war for the devices themselves let alone the books. Maybe that is kinda why Amazon bought Mobipocket? To move in that direction? From my reading it's not a huge stretch to create a Mobipocket version from the Kindle version???
Remember, it was grass-roots efforts that propelled MP3 to the top of the music format heap, and music publishers essentially caved to its ubiquitous use. We could still see that in the e-book market, especially if easy-to-use conversion tools and cross-platform reader apps are made available.
I dunno if that is going to happen with books as this go'round the publishers have had time to "learn" from the MP3 issue and how it played out. Seems even the economics of scale and the fact those who buy only USED p-books now would likely become ebook buyers in very short order (revenue the current system never sees), will not deter them from the ham-handed control they hold over both authors and the electronic publication of their works. Ebooks should have been the FIRST thing to evolve since the advent of the portable computer...not the last....
I am not sure if anyone read it but I believe it was either Cnet or PCMag that ran a poll and blog/board about the Kindle and whether they would buy a device...the vast majority were flabbergasted over the device cost not the book cost. People wanted either more functionality from the device AND/OR a significantly lower price.
I know I can say that the $400 price tag is exactly why I will not buy into a device that might not even work in 2-years if Sprint decides EVDO is not all that great or the whole thing is left to die on the vine. Plus I have been on this computer age treadmill for almost 4-decades now and am simply tired of the instability that it has devolved into...easier to stop buying books period then $400 every couple years just to buy and read books or listen to audio content...
I look at Audible as an example...they licensed their format to device mfg's and that is when the service and content demand took off big time...
So until there is sanity in the device arena and the book format arena I will live with Baen, Project Guttenberg & such but I refuse to visit the darknet side.
I am sorry as I seem to have diverted this thread a bit off-topic but it is simply I cannot see any price competition for the devices until other aspects of the industry fall into line and cooperate....yeah, and there really is a Spider Pig!