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Old 12-11-2008, 11:24 AM   #76
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Although I just noticed the Hardback is $50 through Random House as well and that edition also has a list price of $50 on Amazon as well.

So it seems all ebook retailers except for Amazon have to sell this the e-version of this overpriced edition of this 30 year old book. While Amazon can still sell whatever version they have rights to for $2.95.

As I said before, even if you own a Kindle, I don't see how anyone can think this sort of crap is anything but bad for ebooks and epublishing.
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Old 12-11-2008, 12:56 PM   #77
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Actually... I don't read e-books because I hope to save money. I read them because they do not require environmentally-irresponsible printing
For me this is reason #2. Reason #1 is the convince of being able to carry all my books in a small device.

I tried going green and practice it when I can. But it is hard being green and not being hypocrite (this is directed to my personal feeling of me claiming to be green and directed at noone else). For instance the ink used in clothing. The electronic devices that are used to read eBooks, the wasted produced by electic plants to power our house, fast food, etc....

At least the waste produced by pBooks is much less severe than many of the other wasted in our society. Paper is 100% bio-degradable.
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Old 12-11-2008, 12:56 PM   #78
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Just checked BooksonBoard and it's currently around $45 there too. So probably not a typo That's ridiculous, especially given the Kindle price. I'm sure it's not the fault of either of those sites, but if it's because of some deal between the publisher and Amazon that really sucks.

The list price is $50 at Sony Connect as well, $50 at ebooks.com. Direct from Random House? $50 also.
It's possible that a mistake made by the publisher is being propagated through the system. (Of course, it's also possible that an idiotic decision by the publisher is being propagated through the system.)

An illustration (not price-related): If you go to Amazon and search for my name you will see two books with noticeably amateurish-looking covers. (From a Changeling Star and Down the Stream of Stars.) Those aren't the real covers. Those were going to be the real covers of the ereads editions until I contacted the artist of the original Bantam editions and asked for permission to reuse the Bantam art. But somehow those godawful covers made it into a database (this is like 7 years ago) and propagated into the system, and I have tried over and over to get them corrected, to no avail. (If you click my ereads link in my sig line, you'll see the actual covers.) So this sort of thing does happen. And that's not even the only example from my own books.

Re whether Amazon is taking a hit on the lower prices: I have no insider information on that, obviously, but the discounting for ebooks does not necessarily follow the same model as the discounting for treebooks (percent off suggested retail)--and even with the treebook model, there are all kinds of special promotional discounts that can be offered to large retailers moving large volume (with the royalty to the author dropping precipitously on such discounts).
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Old 12-11-2008, 01:34 PM   #79
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For me this is reason #2. Reason #1 is the convince of being able to carry all my books in a small device.

I tried going green and practice it when I can. But it is hard being green and not being hypocrite (this is directed to my personal feeling of me claiming to be green and directed at noone else). For instance the ink used in clothing. The electronic devices that are used to read eBooks, the wasted produced by electic plants to power our house, fast food, etc....

At least the waste produced by pBooks is much less severe than many of the other wasted in our society. Paper is 100% bio-degradable.
While I hate to further complicate your decisions...

Yes, although paper is 100% bio-degradable, the fact is that paper production not only causes significant deforestation (not all paper is farmed, yet), but in the actual production, massive amounts of chemicals and bleaches are used in most processes. The runoff from those chemicals is simply dumped into the nearest river. So paper isn't as environmentally friendly as it may seem.

And while an e-book reader may require production of electronic components, which involves its own waste cycle, you can compare that to the fact that a reader can potentially replace hundreds, even thousands, of paper books, which would make it less net-wasteful than books.

(Of course, if you already have a device capable of reading e-books, like a cellphone, PDA, etc... you don't need to get a reader, and that much less production waste is generated...)

There are always trade-offs involved in being green (which I, as a 30+ year green advocate, know well). You don't have to be 100% green for it to count... you just do what you can, when you can, and be mindful of avoiding waste. If you measure your plusses against your minuses, and you are producing less net waste than the average American, you're doing well.

Last edited by Steven Lyle Jordan; 12-11-2008 at 01:36 PM.
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:25 PM   #80
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While I hate to further complicate your decisions...

Yes, although paper is 100% bio-degradable, the fact is that paper production not only causes significant deforestation (not all paper is farmed, yet), but in the actual production, massive amounts of chemicals and bleaches are used in most processes. The runoff from those chemicals is simply dumped into the nearest river. So paper isn't as environmentally friendly as it may seem.

And while an e-book reader may require production of electronic components, which involves its own waste cycle, you can compare that to the fact that a reader can potentially replace hundreds, even thousands, of paper books, which would make it less net-wasteful than books.

(Of course, if you already have a device capable of reading e-books, like a cellphone, PDA, etc... you don't need to get a reader, and that much less production waste is generated...)

There are always trade-offs involved in being green (which I, as a 30+ year green advocate, know well). You don't have to be 100% green for it to count... you just do what you can, when you can, and be mindful of avoiding waste. If you measure your plusses against your minuses, and you are producing less net waste than the average American, you're doing well.

I'd also like to point out that for every mmp sold, a good three or five are ctripped of their covers and thrown in the trash (same for magazines). Used to bug the crap out of my when I worked at the bookstore, but then there really wasn't a viable option for them. Stores can't stock that many, can't donate them because then it gets all black market and stuff, and can't sell it at a discount because the bookstores won't get the profits (not sure how it works, but I think the stores get paid when they are sold, and when they send back the covers they don't get charged).

So its not just the paperbacks you read, but a whole lot more. I don't know if ebooks will ever have a major impact on this, but I can hope it will.
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Old 12-14-2008, 06:45 PM   #81
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I'd also like to point out that for every mmp sold, a good three or five are ctripped of their covers and thrown in the trash (same for magazines)...there really wasn't a viable option for them. Stores can't stock that many, can't donate them because then it gets all black market and stuff, and can't sell it at a discount because the bookstores won't get the profits...
Mass market paperback returns are high, but not that high. I think the average nowadays is in the 50% range -- one book sold, one book stripped (cover returned for credit) and pulped.

Stores can't sell the stripped books in any form because that would be selling stolen property. Same with donating them. They are unsold copies for which the publisher has refunded the money, and neither the publisher nor author gets any money for it. They don't return the whole book because the cost of shipping, sorting, returning to storage, etc., is too great.
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Old 12-14-2008, 07:50 PM   #82
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Mass market paperback returns are high, but not that high. I think the average nowadays is in the 50% range -- one book sold, one book stripped (cover returned for credit) and pulped.

Stores can't sell the stripped books in any form because that would be selling stolen property. Same with donating them. They are unsold copies for which the publisher has refunded the money, and neither the publisher nor author gets any money for it. They don't return the whole book because the cost of shipping, sorting, returning to storage, etc., is too great.
50% is still pretty high. Thanks for clearing that up for me though, I knew there was a good reason but I didn't know the details.

When I worked for B&N, they let us keep stripped copies (but not at Waldenbooks). Last I heard though they were phasing that out.
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