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Old 08-08-2008, 09:31 AM   #1
haridasi
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Why should publishers take ebooks seriously?

I'm currently in the process of writing an open letter that anybody can send to a publisher if an ebook you're interested in isn't available as an ebook. As part of that process I started asking myself why should publishers take ebooks seriously?

I would like to hear your inputs and hopefully I will get some more reasons to add to the letter.

Below is the original entry witch is posted here: http://klungvik.com/?p=66

When thinking about ebooks, it's easy to see that it's the direction the world is moving towards. With the release of Kindle the world of electronic books took a big step forward as americans embraced this new book development.

Unfortunately, ebooks is viewed more as a curiosity than a necessity. There's a lack of focus from the publishers that is a bit astounding. As an example I use Macmillian which is one of the largest publishers in the world today and have many subsidiary publishers. Their top selling books is only sold as paperbacks. Even when one does a search with ebook as search term nothing comes up. Ebook is not even mentioned as a word in Macmillan News for all publishers. Which makes this even more surprising considering that Tor is one of Macmillan's subsidiaries and one can buy Tor DRM free ebooks from Webscription.

Ebook readers have already understood the benefits for them in purchasing and reading ebooks. The consequences and benefits of providing ebooks are:

One can't stop the future from happening
As mentioned above the release of Kindle was a big step towards ebooks. By not preparing for ebooks, publishers will fall behind.

Loss of income
By not preparing for ebooks (and the digital age), publishers will fall behind. If ebook readers wants to read a book, they don't necessarily by the paperback version if the ebook version isn't available.

Loosing ground for competitors
Consumers will turn to competitors that do provide the products they're interested in.

Piracy
When people don't find what they search for in any legal means, many will instead turn to pirated copies of low quality which again result in loss of income.

Ebooks is cheaper to produce
An ebook only needs to be created once for a specific format. The benefit for publishers of ebooks is the reduced costs involved in producing and distributing them.

Ebooks reach a bigger market
Ebooks is great for people with reading disabilities, and will therefore be a part of increasing sales.

Ebooks are also easier to distribute all over the world. Everybody with an internet connection can buy an ebook.

Decreased production costs can result in cheaper ebooks
By providing ebooks for a lower price than on paperbacks (considering the reduced production costs), it will encourage the consumers to buy more books. Ebooks priced lower than the price of paperbacks will mean more sales for publishers and happy ebook consumers ready to buy more, so everybody wins.

Marketing possibilities
Publishers can entice consumers in various ways by providing book excerpts, audio excerpts, comments and discussion with the authors and book reviews to mention a few.

Creating loyal consumers

The marketing possibilities can create more loyal consumers that will come back for more and keep track of news that a publisher provides. Thereby creating a closer dialog between publisher and consumer.

Can you come up with more reasons or elaborate on one of the existing ones?

Last edited by haridasi; 08-08-2008 at 09:33 AM.
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Old 08-08-2008, 09:36 AM   #2
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good

Hi


Wonderful job.
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Old 08-09-2008, 05:29 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by haridasi View Post
I'm currently in the process of writing an open letter that anybody can send to a publisher if an ebook you're interested in isn't available as an ebook.
Great job!
I'm translating your text in Italian for the BookCamp Social Network, and develop a web page where people could enter Title, Author, Publisher(+Author) email address, Signature, and clic to got the email sent automatically. Stay tuned!
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Old 08-11-2008, 08:20 AM   #4
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Great job!
I'm translating your text in Italian for the BookCamp Social Network, and develop a web page where people could enter Title, Author, Publisher(+Author) email address, Signature, and clic to got the email sent automatically. Stay tuned!
That's fantastic ! I'm going to translate the same letter to norwegian when I get the time. I have updated the letter by the way, so check out the new and improved letter.
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Old 02-28-2009, 10:57 AM   #5
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Quote:
Piracy
When people don't find what they search for in any legal means, many will instead turn to pirated copies of low quality which again result in loss of income.
May I ask why you are using the adjectival phrase "low quality"?
I find this a bit misleading, as well a red herring. The **AA also used to advertise with the 'fact' that "divx was hugely inferior" while most of the stuff you could find online was of a very acceptable, especially in the years after 2002 or so. (similarly for MP3s.. recent encodes are nearly transparant to the ear, although circulating older encodes will still be bad and skew the picture)

Similarly, there are more than enough (very) good quality ebooks to be found online in the "grey" areas of the law&the 'net; and the fewer "legal" alternatives/shops there are, the more time this distribution avenue will have to take hold in the mind and habits of 'the public'. As such, referring to those ebooks as "low quality" is deceptive, and will only serve to convince the <fools> to keep playing ostrich for a while longer, and ignore the fact that there already are good alternatives to the 'establishment' publishers available, and that the list of (OCR-ed) books is expanding on a daily basis.
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Old 02-28-2009, 02:56 PM   #6
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"Below is the original entry witch is posted here". should be "which"
"americans" should be capitalized.
"Ebooks is great" should be "Ebooks are great".

Spelling matters when you are trying to impress someone as being serious.

"Ebooks are also easier to distribute all over the world. Everybody with an internet connection can buy an ebook.": This is going to scare them. Copyrights are different in different countries.
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Old 04-23-2009, 01:58 AM   #7
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You may also want to point out that consumers are likely to purchase ebooks more frequently than their paper-based cousins due to ease of access. Sometimes you just can't get to a physical bookstore and the readily available nature of the ebook means you may increase sales per person just by improving availability.
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Old 04-23-2009, 04:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nom_de_plume View Post
You may also want to point out that consumers are likely to purchase ebooks more frequently than their paper-based cousins due to ease of access. Sometimes you just can't get to a physical bookstore and the readily available nature of the ebook means you may increase sales per person just by improving availability.
Quite so (looks at Fictionwise bookshelf )
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Old 04-23-2009, 05:21 AM   #9
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The whole idea isn't worth. Nobody reads open letters and declarations. Publishers will follow the market and the market needs. It's simple.
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Old 04-23-2009, 06:06 AM   #10
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The whole idea isn't worth. Nobody reads open letters and declarations. Publishers will follow the market and the market needs. It's simple.
Unfortunetely too simple to be true at the moment. It's mainly because the international ebook market does not follow the typical market rules at all and the publishers are rather part of an oligopoly than part of a polypoly. Beside that geographical restrictions, individual contracts, misestimation of market potential and fear of "piracy" counteract the market needs in the (e)book market.
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Old 04-23-2009, 06:09 AM   #11
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It's 14 months since that letter was written: did you get any reply?
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