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Old 01-20-2011, 10:33 AM   #61
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Old 01-20-2011, 10:39 AM   #62
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I have owned my e-reader for over 2 years and have not bought a single print book since then.
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Old 01-20-2011, 01:33 PM   #63
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The point of the poll is not to make you feel good about yourself.
It's not about me. The point is that words have meaning. By choosing the words they did to identify their best customers, they have misrepresented the group.

Suppose instead of using the phrase "avid readers" they used the phrase "football players", and then went on to say that they defined "football players" as those who buy 13 or more books per year.
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Old 01-20-2011, 01:57 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Maggie Leung View Post
I agree that it's any business's job to figure out how to stay afloat. If it can't, too bad. That's how the marketplace works.

Not all avid readers are potential buyers of new books, as many posters have volunteered. Some borrow or read freebies; some will spend only a few bucks per book. If a publisher decides that it needs or wants a certain profit margin to stay in business, it makes no sense to chase after every avid reader despite lack of ability or willingness to spend.
Well, then what they should be doing is trying to convert the avid reader into a buyer, and to do that, they need to understand the avid reader. Some will never be converted--they don't have the discretionary income, they don't care about keeping books so they use the library, etc. But others are potential customers. Maybe some will buy at a certain price point. Maybe some will buy in a certain category that's underrepresented. Maybe some have space issues that kept them from buying paper books but they can be enticed to buy e-books.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:04 PM   #65
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I'm not buying any more paper books because 1) I don't have the space, 2) I don't have all that money, 3) there are libraries who are very willing to lend me their copies. However, I would pay for paper books if I had a better salary & were rich. Sadly...
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:17 PM   #66
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I bought my first ereader because I was sick of books overflowing bookcases (and stacked two deep). So know, if I can't get it in ebook form, I order it from the library. At least when I finish reading it, I don't have to find a place to put it. The problem with buying ANY books, is they go on the top of the TBR pile. If I get them from the library, I have to read them immediately. I have not bought anything other than a specialty book (Cubs) for the last 2 1/2 years)
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:28 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by Catlady View Post
Well, then what they should be doing is trying to convert the avid reader into a buyer, and to do that, they need to understand the avid reader. Some will never be converted--they don't have the discretionary income, they don't care about keeping books so they use the library, etc. But others are potential customers. Maybe some will buy at a certain price point. Maybe some will buy in a certain category that's underrepresented. Maybe some have space issues that kept them from buying paper books but they can be enticed to buy e-books.
I figure businesses are best able to figure out what they "should" do, given that they know their own resources, limitations and priorities. If they can't manage that, the marketplace will take care of them.

I wouldn't look to any business to serve every consumer. If big publishers decide they don't want to sell below a certain price point, that leaves room for smaller businesses. With books, as with many other products, there are substitute goods for those who want to pay less.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:40 PM   #68
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggie Leung View Post
I figure businesses are best able to figure out what they "should" do, given that they know their own resources, limitations and priorities. If they can't manage that, the marketplace will take care of them.
Maggie, that makes a lot of sense in theory, but I get the impression that there are many here at MR who disagree that the real world works like that.

Specifically, I think many challenge the proposal that the big publishers are run by competent managers. I define competent as being good in the book business, not merely maximizing shareholders' short term profits.

And second, I think that many believe that the marketplace will not dispose of the bad managers because the government with its enforcement of copyrights laws will protect them.

Last edited by GA Russell; 01-20-2011 at 02:46 PM.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:43 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by GA Russell View Post
Maggie, that makes a lot of sense in theory, but I get the impression that there are many here at MR who disagree that the real world works like that.

Specifically, I think many challenge the proposal that the big publishers are run by competent managers. I define competent as being good in the book business, not merely maximizing shareholders short term profits.

And second, I think that many believe that the marketplace will not take dispose of the bad managers because the government with its enforcement of copyrights laws will protect them.
Let's assume they're incompetent for the sake of discussion. And that government will keep inept people in charge. If that's the case, I don't see consumer complaints helping.
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Old 01-20-2011, 02:48 PM   #70
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggie Leung View Post
I figure businesses are best able to figure out what they "should" do, given that they know their own resources, limitations and priorities. If they can't manage that, the marketplace will take care of them.

I wouldn't look to any business to serve every consumer. If big publishers decide they don't want to sell below a certain price point, that leaves room for smaller businesses. With books, as with many other products, there are substitute goods for those who want to pay less.
So what you're saying, in effect, is that it's pointless to have or offer an opinion, that only buying behavior matters. Okay, in the final analysis, that's true enough.

But then just why are ANY of these surveys done? The publishers and booksellers are attempting to figure out an emerging market they don't have a handle on. All some of us are saying here is that they seem to be asking the wrong questions.
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:05 PM   #71
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So what you're saying, in effect, is that it's pointless to have or offer an opinion, that only buying behavior matters. Okay, in the final analysis, that's true enough.

But then just why are ANY of these surveys done? The publishers and booksellers are attempting to figure out an emerging market they don't have a handle on. All some of us are saying here is that they seem to be asking the wrong questions.
Publishers clearly don't have a firm grasp on the quickly evolving book market. (I don't claim to, either, lol.) They're trying to find their way, it looks to me. Surveys help fill in blanks for them. That doesn't mean that every survey is meaningful or that every piece of info is as good as the next.

Consumers are clearly entitled to their opinions, but opinions won't sway publishers as long as enough readers are buying at current prices. The key thing is, IMO, big publishers are mired in legacy costs and can't change quickly even if they want to. (Legacy businesses in other industries often suffer the same fate, as with automakers, airlines and such.) They have existing bills and overhead to meet, and it will take time for things to shake out. Some might adapt and survive; others will fold. Meanwhile, there's always opportunity for new businesses to emerge and eat their lunch, or at least nibble around the edges.
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:22 PM   #72
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I'm going to say that the reason so many people buy both print and eBook is due to pbacks occaisonally being CHEAPER than their e counterparts. As well as availability - not everything is electronic yet.

What surprises me is the money spent here. I don't intend to buy many paper books now that I have an eReader. I intend to READ several - borrowed from a library.

Also, as far as Indie booksellers go... I really think most people who SAY they want to shop Indie don't actually do it. You can get products that are usually the same or very close to the same at bigger stores for less money. Most people do the math and come out with more change in their pockets.
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Old 01-20-2011, 03:24 PM   #73
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However, I would pay for paper books if I had a better salary & were rich. Sadly...
We are in the same boat
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Old 01-20-2011, 04:37 PM   #74
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But then just why are ANY of these surveys done?
1) Companies are not omniscient.
2) There is a limited amount of data any single entity can grab. E.g. Amazon won't know what's happening with small indie booksellers; indie booksellers will be in the dark about a lot of things.
3) Smaller companies in particular won't have the funds to run their own market research.
4) In some cases, it's better anyway to get info from a source outside the company.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Catlady
The publishers and booksellers are attempting to figure out an emerging market they don't have a handle on. All some of us are saying here is that they seem to be asking the wrong questions.
So what "wrong questions" are being asked here?

They're figuring out that people who buy ebooks still buy paper books. They suggest that an indie bookstore's customers may be willing to provide an email to receive promo info. They point out that people think more about indie bookstores than they actually buy stuff there.

If you were running and indie shop, wouldn't you want to know stuff like this?

And would you really want to focus your limited resources on people who don't want to buy books?
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Old 01-20-2011, 05:48 PM   #75
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cromag, may I ask where you purchased your used books? I am in NJ also and haven't found a used bookstore near my home.

Our local libraries have a great inter-library loan system. I request videos all the time.
I go to the Old Book Shop in Morristown. It's on John Street, which is not in the business/downtown area -- it's near the county jail, bail bonds offices, and inexpensive bars. It's just off Ridgedale Ave., by all the car dealers.

I'm pretty sure they don't do business over the internet, but I was surprised to find they have a Facebook page.
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