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Old 03-16-2010, 10:32 PM   #16
arielinflux
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Truth is with Internet access, they have access to gazillions of Ebooks, most up-to-date, avialable in all kinds of languages, pirated and thus free of charge of course. Most of them can be downloaded via bitTorrent or from filesharing sites like rapidshare, megaupload..
Not a very honourable thing to say, but I did load my 160g harddisk full of ebooks and audiobooks(illegal to do so in Hong Kong) when I visited my friends in China.
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They might have e-readers everywhere but I wonder what kinds of material are available for those e-readers?

Easy to get chairman Mao's memoirs, but difficult to get the Dalai Lamas autobiography I suspect!
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Old 03-16-2010, 10:51 PM   #17
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(*waits for all the authors here to gang up on arielinflux, lol*)

Dude, arielinflux, it might seem like you're doing a cool thing and saving a lot of money, but you're hurting a lot of people by doing that. It's one of the things we preach against in both the commercial world, and even more so in the Open Source world. There are plenty of free ebooks out there, and it's fine if you download those freely and legally. But if the books are not free and require you to pay for them, don't steal them.

It's a simple rule of economics. If you steal from someone, you deny them their income. Some people make their money from writing books. It'd be like you coming home from work and having someone steal your paycheck because they want to go out and party. It's no different. Just because the theft is digital doesn't change the fact that you've denied someone their income.

If they agree to give it to you for free, then more power to them. But if they are selling their ebook, have the decency to buy it from them. And I know you're not the only one doing it, as your statement attests, but at least have the decency to not condone what they're doing, and even encourage them to become honest readers too.
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Old 03-17-2010, 01:02 AM   #18
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I just wonder how many authors are now receiving income just because some of their work reached a broader audience via the torrent sites? Two copies of a debut novel with no publicity budget, in paperback form sitting on a bottom shelf at Barnes & Noble vs. being on one of the major torrent sites and being seen by hundreds of thousands of people? You writers might lose some sales, but then again, you might develop a loyal following of readers that you never would have had otherwise - ones who will put pressure on your publisher to find out when your next book is coming out when your three-book deal ends.

Not to mention out-of-print authors being introduced to a whole new audience just because someone took the time and effort to turn their work into an ebook.

I understand your POV, but I don't think that the old business model fits very well in today's digital world, and to cling to it to the exclusion of all else will harm the writer in the long run. It may not seem fair, and it may not be what people in other professions face, but it is what it is, and it's going to be up to you authors to decide whether or not you want to demonize a portion of your readership, or if you are willing to accept a certain amount of "breakage" of your product, as manufacturers do.

Last edited by Xanthe; 03-17-2010 at 01:11 AM.
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Old 03-17-2010, 04:40 AM   #19
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Our shopping malls over here are definitely doing something very wrong ...
Maybe Karstadt could introduce new... concepts, now that they've got almost nothing to lose because they're going to bankrupt soon?
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Old 03-17-2010, 05:20 AM   #20
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Thre's not much point rehearsing the old chestnut about authors getting free exposure from torrents -- it's been discussed to death here on MobileRead. The fact is, as Steven Lake says, writing is work, at least when done professionally, and when you don't pay the workman he eventually downs his tools.

When I was offering my novels as shareware, I was surprised by the huge number of hits my site was getting from China, second only to the U.S. and way ahead of Britain and the rest of Europe combined. Not a single payment was received from China.
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Old 03-17-2010, 02:03 PM   #21
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Sorry if it's been discussed to death, but I'm new here and I haven't participated in any of those discussions, as I'm sure many other newbies haven't. So while it might be an "old chestnut" to you, it isn't to me.

Using China as an example, though, is a bit disingenuous given the fact that the country is just opening up to information downloads from the rest of the world, and that the average annual income probably doesn't allow for much discretionary spending by the majority of the population. Nor, I would assume, in a formerly completely communistic country is the capitalistic notion of paying for everything second nature. I'm not excusing piracy, only saying that the core mindset might be different from yours or mine.

I think that writer's need to get out of their rarefied atmosphere a bit. The majority of us in other occupations do work in the course of jobs for which we don't receive remuneration - things we do above and beyond our job descriptions or pay grade, just because it is necessary or because it would help someone or because it will solve a future problem. That is life. We don't quit our jobs just because we have to do more than we planned or we don't get the payments we think we deserve. Instead, we get something better - we get known. We get known as someone who can be depended on, as someone who will get the job done. Sometimes the best remuneration in life is ephemeral, not concrete.
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:07 AM   #22
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Having seen those crowds of people in every book shop in China, sitting, leaning standing, all with their noses buried in a book, I understand that reading is an activity that the Chinese really value, and in spite of all one hears about censorship and similar, there are actually an enormous number of books in every genre published in China. Further, there are literally dozens of makes of ereaders from about 10 Kwai (RMB) each up to thousands.
Also, there is currently no shortage of ebooks from what I can gather, and as with everything in the PRC, some are expensive and legal, and many are cheap and illegal. Basically with brands like Hanvon as the flagship Chinese ereader, and the 10 RMB, back-street factory models (many of which end up being sold outside China in shops like Wall Mart for much fine money), the whole ereader.ebook market in China seems to me to be extremely healthy.
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Old 05-01-2013, 02:18 AM   #23
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Sorry if it's been discussed to death, but I'm new here and I haven't participated in any of those discussions, as I'm sure many other newbies haven't. So while it might be an "old chestnut" to you, it isn't to me.

Using China as an example, though, is a bit disingenuous given the fact that the country is just opening up to information downloads from the rest of the world, and that the average annual income probably doesn't allow for much discretionary spending by the majority of the population. Nor, I would assume, in a formerly completely communistic country is the capitalistic notion of paying for everything second nature. I'm not excusing piracy, only saying that the core mindset might be different from yours or mine.

I think that writer's need to get out of their rarefied atmosphere a bit. The majority of us in other occupations do work in the course of jobs for which we don't receive remuneration - things we do above and beyond our job descriptions or pay grade, just because it is necessary or because it would help someone or because it will solve a future problem. That is life. We don't quit our jobs just because we have to do more than we planned or we don't get the payments we think we deserve. Instead, we get something better - we get known. We get known as someone who can be depended on, as someone who will get the job done. Sometimes the best remuneration in life is ephemeral, not concrete.
Your ideas regarding China are a bit dated. First there are at least 50 million filthy rich people, more than the total population of most other countries. Second, communism died with Mao and for the last 20 years China has been the most blatantly capitalistic system on the planet. Money rules (and connections, if only to make even more money). But honesty is not highly valued, in a departure from traditional Chinese values, if you can "stick it to someone" then it is regarded as a batch of honor (I was smarter) so don't expect people to pay for digital goods. What they like to pay for are luxury items to show off.
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Old 05-03-2013, 11:31 PM   #24
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As a Chinese MR member, I think I can explain some truth about eBooks in China.

1, the brand "Hanvon" is a pretty old brand, as far as I can remember, it might come out at the same time with Kindle. But these years they are dropping rapidly, and the the price which HansTWN mentioned (more than $300) is not the average e-ink reader price in China. Here we can also buy an e-ink reader under $100.

2, Chinese digital contents publisher are struggling fighting with the piracy, and there are 3-4 big B2C e-commerce sites are selling eBooks. One of them hit the sales record of 3,000,000,000 US Dollars on Nov. 11 last year. Yes, 3,000,000,000 US Dollars on just a single day.
(I don't mean it sells eBooks for $3,000,000,000 on that day. I just want you to know this site has a huge influence in China, and it begun to sell eBooks last year )

3, Since 2012, more and more people were beginning to know the e-ink reader, and in the first-level cities like Shanghai, Beijing, you can always see people reading eBooks on e-ink readers on the subway.

4, Most of Chinese people still think .txt is what an eBook is.

5, The most popular e-ink reader in China is Kindle. Although we can't buy a Kindle from amazon.cn, but we can buy it from other site like amazon.com or amazon.jp.

6, There are rumors that Kindle is going to enter China this year, I believe it will help China's eBook market become mature.

Last edited by ForsCream; 05-03-2013 at 11:35 PM.
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Old 05-04-2013, 09:23 AM   #25
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This. Thread. Is. Three. Years. Old.
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Old 05-04-2013, 08:42 PM   #26
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Your ideas regarding China are a bit dated.
Of course they are dated. I wrote that post in 2010.
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Old 05-04-2013, 10:06 PM   #27
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Let this thread go. It's old and obsolete.
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Old 05-04-2013, 11:29 PM   #28
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I thought Tonycole's post was informative and interesting as an update on the past discussion. I really don't see why the thread shouldn't have been resumed. I guess he could have started a new thread, but his post makes more sense in the presence of the old ones. So, what's wrong with resurrecting an old thread if there's a current point to be made?
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Old 05-06-2013, 01:21 AM   #29
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I will chirp in here, since I started this post all those years ago. e-ink books have pretty much vanished from the Shanghai shops, last time I looked. There were a few but everything now is LCD tablets, small and big. Since they are quite a lot cheaper than e-ink readers, nobody is buying them that I have seen. I was going to buy a new Paperwhite but the price was almost double than the North American price. Not worth it.
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Old 05-07-2013, 04:14 PM   #30
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This thread might be old but I have not read it before and I found it more fascinating than anything else I've read today. Plus the update about the e-book market in China added to the value. So a big thumbs down to those complaining about necro-posting.
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