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Old 03-08-2012, 09:44 AM   #106
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Originally Posted by anamardoll View Post
They're definitely between a rock and a hard place. If they accept every indie who walks in the door, they could be getting badly-formatted neo-Nazi propaganda. If they rely on professional reviews and A6 gatekeepers, they could be bled to death with check-out limits and 300% mark-ups.

And the compromise position -- accept indies, but read the book first -- is an undue burden on the librarians.
My library has someone on staff read (or at least skim) books before putting them out if they don't have a review they trust.
In most libraries I know that is pretty standard.
They get a lot of donated books and any review of many books from before the internet are no longer obtainable.

Indies pretty much fit this category, rather than presenting a new or unique problem.
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Old 03-08-2012, 01:14 PM   #107
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This whole thing strikes me as commerce, not learning, not public good, not whatever...
It's about both commerce and public goods. You might want to keep in mind that no matter what, public goods have to be paid for.


Quote:
Originally Posted by dkperez
I keep reading here in MR that there are all these fantastic indie authors and publishers. If so, and the items from the "big 6" are unavailable or unreasonably expensive, WHY can't the libraries purchase from these other sources?
They can.

Random House has around 17% market share (based on sales revenues). The "Big Six" have about 57% of market share, so libraries could easily go to other publishers -- if those publishers offer ebooks people want and have a library arrangement.


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Originally Posted by dkperez
The ALA (I presume some umbrella library group and lobby and something out there to advocate for libraries) should GET THE WORD OUT.
They're already doing that. I hate to break it to you, but it often takes more than 5 days for something like this to change.


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Originally Posted by dkperez
Between the Internet and all the other media, there should CERTAINLY be a simple way to put something up that'll tell everyone....
Yeah, it's called "spam."

Seriously, any system that could notify every US citizen of a private issue like this would be abused six ways to Sunday and get summarily ignored. The people who are interested in this issue will be better served with a more targeted plan, which I suspect orgs like the ALA are already prepping.
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Old 03-08-2012, 03:18 PM   #108
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Originally Posted by Sil_liS View Post
What about this?
So they get to deduct most expenses in the year they are incurred just like any other self-employed individual. There's nothing special that applies to writers. They were given the same tax rules as other sole proprietors. Certain expenditures still have to be amortized.
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Old 03-08-2012, 03:27 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by CWatkinsNash View Post
So they get to deduct most expenses in the year they are incurred just like any other self-employed individual. There's nothing special that applies to writers. They were given the same tax rules as other sole proprietors. Certain expenditures still have to be amortized.
I'm definitely mulling the idea of writing a thriller set in a succession of Caribbean islands. And maybe a prequel to "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress". How much is Branson charging for that space tourist trip?
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Old 03-08-2012, 03:29 PM   #110
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Originally Posted by plib View Post
I'm definitely mulling the idea of writing a thriller set in a succession of Caribbean islands. And maybe a prequel to "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress". How much is Branson charging for that space tourist trip?
^This

That was the first thing that popped into my head...


A book...set in Jamaica.
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Old 03-08-2012, 03:30 PM   #111
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plib View Post
I'm definitely mulling the idea of writing a thriller set in a succession of Caribbean islands. And maybe a prequel to "The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress". How much is Branson charging for that space tourist trip?
Perhaps I should have also mentioned that they are still subject to the IRS rules on what discerns a "business" from a "hobby".
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Old 03-08-2012, 05:21 PM   #112
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Originally Posted by anamardoll View Post
Says who? I may lend a paper book to hundreds of friends. That same book might otherwise languish unread on a library shelf.

When I purchase a paper book, I receive the right to lend it to someone else. I can, for that matter, give it to a library. Shocking, I know, but I have in fact done this very thing.

eBooks should not be different, in my humble opinion.

ETA: And no, I do not accept the "eBooks are forever!" explanation. I have books that are several decades old and still in mint condition despite being moved dozens of times and read more times than I can count.
You are absolutely correct. In several years you could lend a bookto hundreds of friends.

A library could lend it to hundreds of patrons as well. Average loan period being three weeks, library turn around time about 3 days, time for next hold to pick up book after notification 2-3 days, factoring in early returns and overdue average time borrowed at 3-4 weeks a book. About 12-17 times annually.

Assuming hundreds of times means in excess of 200 than if 20 times a year that the book can be borrowed it will take 10 years. At 12 times it would take 16+ years. Factoring in never returned books , wear and tear and declining popularity of the book it could take much longer.

Of course a private owner can lend the book out for an undetermined time or 20 minutes a time so this is kind of apples and oranges.

Helen

Last edited by speakingtohe; 03-08-2012 at 05:31 PM.
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Old 03-08-2012, 07:20 PM   #113
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Ebook pricing for libraries actually made my local news this evening: http://www.newschannel5.com/story/17...cost-of-ebooks
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Old 03-08-2012, 08:23 PM   #114
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Originally Posted by CWatkinsNash View Post
Ebook pricing for libraries actually made my local news this evening: http://www.newschannel5.com/story/17...cost-of-ebooks
My area hasn't said anything as yet. Politics. It devours everything else.
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Old 03-09-2012, 05:45 AM   #115
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Originally Posted by CWatkinsNash View Post
So they get to deduct most expenses in the year they are incurred just like any other self-employed individual. There's nothing special that applies to writers. They were given the same tax rules as other sole proprietors. Certain expenditures still have to be amortized.
So the title "Special Tax Breaks for Writers" should have been "Self Employment Tax Breaks That Apply to Writers"? Or is it that all self employment tax breaks apply to writers?
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:00 AM   #116
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Originally Posted by anamardoll View Post
Says who? I may lend a paper book to hundreds of friends. That same book might otherwise languish unread on a library shelf.

When I purchase a paper book, I receive the right to lend it to someone else. I can, for that matter, give it to a library. Shocking, I know, but I have in fact done this very thing.

eBooks should not be different, in my humble opinion.

ETA: And no, I do not accept the "eBooks are forever!" explanation. I have books that are several decades old and still in mint condition despite being moved dozens of times and read more times than I can count.
Karma points headed your way for this.
The points you make above are actually one of the reasons I buy printed books more than e-books, despite loving my e-reader. It's because I can do whatever I want with the book when I am done. Just so much more legal mileage.

And I have gotten so tired of the overexaggerated fragility of books - There are books at our local library that had already been there for decades before I started using that library and are still, the same identifiable copy, being used 16 years later.

Last edited by spindlegirl; 03-09-2012 at 08:06 AM.
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Old 03-09-2012, 08:05 AM   #117
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Has no one here ever read a fiction book and that led them to explore a topic further? Saw something in a movie or TV show and had their curiosity stirred?
This. Say what you will about "BIll and Ted's excellent adventure" being mindless fluff for the masses, but my daughter became obsessed with learning about Joan of Arc, the Mongols and China, Billy the Kid, and many other of the people Keanu Reeves travels through time to "collect" for his history report.
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Old 03-09-2012, 09:22 AM   #118
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Originally Posted by Sil_liS View Post
So the title "Special Tax Breaks for Writers" should have been "Self Employment Tax Breaks That Apply to Writers"?
Yes.

If I'm a house painter and I incur travel expenses, research costs, or require equipment specifically for my business, I can deduct those from my taxes in the year they were incurred.

Hobbyists -- iirc, those who earn less than $500 in sales, or have not lost money on their sole proprietorship for 3 years in a row -- do not get those tax breaks.

Hobbyists are also entitled to the exact same copyright protections as professional authors.

So yes, authors are paying taxes just like everyone else.
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Old 03-09-2012, 01:29 PM   #119
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Originally Posted by Sil_liS View Post
So the title "Special Tax Breaks for Writers" should have been "Self Employment Tax Breaks That Apply to Writers"? Or is it that all self employment tax breaks apply to writers?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kali Yuga View Post
Yes.

If I'm a house painter and I incur travel expenses, research costs, or require equipment specifically for my business, I can deduct those from my taxes in the year they were incurred.

Hobbyists -- iirc, those who earn less than $500 in sales, or have not lost money on their sole proprietorship for 3 years in a row -- do not get those tax breaks.

Hobbyists are also entitled to the exact same copyright protections as professional authors.

So yes, authors are paying taxes just like everyone else.
Kali Yuga summed it up nicely, but I just wanted to add that "tax breaks" is a misleading phrase whenever it's used in this context. It's really all just standard business deductions. In fact, sole proprietors who work alone are rarely eligible for actual "tax breaks" - incentives such as tax credits and rebates - because they usually only apply to businesses with employees or have other requirements that an individual does not fulfill.

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