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Old 03-29-2008, 11:46 AM   #16
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Sorry, but I disagree. It's Amazon's store - they can set whatever rules they want (within the law) for people who wish to sell their books there. No publisher is being forced to sell their books through Amazon; if they don't like the terms, they can walk away and sell their books elsewhere.
I'm with Harry on this one, especially since Amazon does not (yet) have sufficient market power to constitute a monopoly. They are probably the most attractive place to sell PoD books, but I doubt that they have hit half of the total market. Yet.

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Old 03-29-2008, 11:50 AM   #17
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I'm with Harry on this one, especially since Amazon does not (yet) have sufficient market power to constitute a monopoly. They are probably the most attractive place to sell PoD books, but I doubt that they have hit half of the total market. Yet.

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I don't mean to sound dismissive, but you're only talking about a pure monopoly, which is in the realm of economics textbooks.
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Old 03-29-2008, 11:50 AM   #18
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Sorry, but I disagree. It's Amazon's store - they can set whatever rules they want (within the law) for people who wish to sell their books there. No publisher is being forced to sell their books through Amazon; if they don't like the terms, they can walk away and sell their books elsewhere.
There's also no guarantee that the BookSurge printer will give the same pricing to the small publisher that another printer would, nor is it necessarily true that BookSurge has better printing quality, product delivery time or lower pre- and post-production fees. A little birdie whispers in my ear that RJ Communications (BooksJustBooks.com) might well beat Amazon's printer in all these areas.

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Old 03-29-2008, 11:53 AM   #19
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And I DIS-disagree! Look, the Kindle format is closely derived from Mobipocket, so there's no 'super-secret' procedure there. Also, the printer does nothing to ensure that the ebooks are properly formatted. Further, Amazon *has* sold ebooks in the past (other than Kindle) and has not demanded that those ebooks be from titles printed by their BookSurge printers. Nor does Amazon insist that the larger publishers give up current printers for BookSurge. Thus Amazon has no real legs to stand on.
Does this have anything to do with eBooks? I thought it was about "print on demand" books?
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Old 03-29-2008, 11:57 AM   #20
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Does this have anything to do with eBooks? I thought it was about "print on demand" books?
Not directly, no.

However Amazon have an innovative, first of it's kind product, the Kindle, which is sending waves through the eBook market.

They are also under scrutiny for their Kindle format books, which offer no extra functionality over mobipocket books...

So, you're absolutely right it isn't about eBooks, however it could well have an impact.
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Old 03-29-2008, 12:01 PM   #21
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I don't mean to sound dismissive, but you're only talking about a pure monopoly, which is in the realm of economics textbooks.
The thing I usually look for is having at least three* market players who are sufficiently competitive to matter. Book-selling, even on-line selling of PoD books seems to have that: Amazon, B&N's marketplace, plus the aggregators like ABEBooks (and similar businesses).

*Works best when at least three are individually significant, but you can get away with filling the third slot with a whole mess of smaller players (considered as a group) as long as the smaller players are relatively easy for customers to find. Or so sayeth the economics and public policy papers I've read. Your mileage may vary -- remember econ is the dismal science, and public policy is worse than that!

Xenophon

P.S. Of course the "three players" rule of thumb assumes that the players actually compete, rather than trying to do the oligopoly thing. In theory the U.S. Justice department and the Federal Trade Commission are supposed to keep track of that. Further, deponent sayeth not.
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Old 03-29-2008, 12:09 PM   #22
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They are also under scrutiny for their Kindle format books, which offer no extra functionality over mobipocket books...
Er, that's because they ARE MobiPocket books .
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Old 03-29-2008, 01:41 PM   #23
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The thing I usually look for is having at least three* market players who are sufficiently competitive to matter. Book-selling, even on-line selling of PoD books seems to have that: Amazon, B&N's marketplace, plus the aggregators like ABEBooks (and similar businesses).

*Works best when at least three are individually significant, but you can get away with filling the third slot with a whole mess of smaller players (considered as a group) as long as the smaller players are relatively easy for customers to find. Or so sayeth the economics and public policy papers I've read. Your mileage may vary -- remember econ is the dismal science, and public policy is worse than that!

Xenophon

P.S. Of course the "three players" rule of thumb assumes that the players actually compete, rather than trying to do the oligopoly thing. In theory the U.S. Justice department and the Federal Trade Commission are supposed to keep track of that. Further, deponent sayeth not.
Hmm. It may be unclear if Amazon are a sufficiently large enough player to be considered abusing their power. However, I'd have expected it to be the case. I couldn't readily find market share percentages around - nor is it a clear case that 20% is always enough and 18% is never enough to count.
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Old 03-29-2008, 01:45 PM   #24
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Er, that's because they ARE MobiPocket books .
Can't buy electronic books from Amazon for anything other than a Kindle. There's no reason for that other than they want to push their own device.

I do realise that they also sell mobipocket books through a different name. However books are now available only on the Kindle, simply because Amazon want their player to get sold.
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Old 03-29-2008, 02:04 PM   #25
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Can't buy electronic books from Amazon for anything other than a Kindle. There's no reason for that other than they want to push their own device.

I do realise that they also sell mobipocket books through a different name. However books are now available only on the Kindle, simply because Amazon want their player to get sold.
I think what would be an interesting experiment would be if someone with a DRM'd Kindle ebook were to attempt to run it through MobiDeDRM to see if that python script could remove the DRM from the Kindle ebook.

Derek
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Old 03-29-2008, 02:08 PM   #26
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I think what would be an interesting experiment would be if someone with a DRM'd Kindle ebook were to attempt to run it through MobiDeDRM to see if that python script could remove the DRM from the Kindle ebook.

Derek
Yep. However it wouldn't suddenly open the floodgates and enable the public to buy electronic books from the Amazon site, since as far as I'm aware you have to have bought a Kindle from them to buy other books.

It would of course though be fantastic news for Kindle customers as they would be able to read the books they had purchased on any other device.
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Old 03-29-2008, 02:12 PM   #27
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Can't buy electronic books from Amazon for anything other than a Kindle. There's no reason for that other than they want to push their own device.

I do realise that they also sell mobipocket books through a different name. However books are now available only on the Kindle, simply because Amazon want their player to get sold.
No, you misunderstand me. I mean that Kindle books actually are MobiPocket books - they are books in MobiPocket format, which use MobiPocket DRM. They are encoded for the MobiPocket ID of the Kindle, just as you'd encode books for any other MobiPocket device at any other MobiPocket bookstore.
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Old 03-29-2008, 02:13 PM   #28
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I think what would be an interesting experiment would be if someone with a DRM'd Kindle ebook were to attempt to run it through MobiDeDRM to see if that python script could remove the DRM from the Kindle ebook.

Derek
Already been done. Yes, it can. Kindle DRM is just Mobi DRM.
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Old 03-29-2008, 02:40 PM   #29
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Already been done. Yes, it can. Kindle DRM is just Mobi DRM.

Really? So if I bought a 'used' Kindle, registered it, and then bought some of those DRM'd ebooks, I'd be able to also read them on my Cybook? Sweet! Mom's been wanting a Kindle, but I like my Cybook.

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Old 03-29-2008, 02:43 PM   #30
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With the Python tool, yes. I don't know if it's legal for you to use it or not, but that's a separate question. There's no technical issue with doing it.
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