» opinion
  • Posted:
  • April 3, 2013
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It’s a good year to fund publishing start-ups. Yesterday, I picked up on an observation made by James McQuivey and Nate Hoffelder: publishers lack the mindset and skills required to disrupt their own business model. That’s a tough thing to change, but a window just might be opening. In February, Crain’s New York Business ran…

  • Posted:
  • March 31, 2013
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Several dozen editorials have been written in the 2 days since Amazon announced plans to buy Goodreads, but one in particular caught my eye today. James McQuivey, writing over at Forbes, laments over the fact that no one in publishing bought Goodreads: I have an important question to ask, one that I am stealing from…

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  • March 21, 2013
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Google’s new note-taking service launched last night and it’s been catching a lot of flack from bloggers. If the early responses are any indication, Google Keep is going to fail not because of any of the service’s shortcomings but because no one trusts Google. When I reviewed Google Keep last night I pointed out that…

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  • March 19, 2013
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The week of March 3-10 was “Read an eBook Week,” which is a week that I particularly look forward to each year. It is the week when many authors put their ebooks on sale, with discounts ranging from 25% to 100% of the normal price. Smashwords is a major promoter of this event, and is…

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  • March 14, 2013
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Have you caught the post on Read Write today about TotalBoox? If you have not read it, don’t bother. The article is wrong, and I can show you why. In that article the author, Antone Gonsalves, argues that the pay-as-you-read startup TotalBoox won’t amount to anything. The tl;dr version is: readers won’t want to pay…

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  • March 8, 2013
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Here’s a story which isn’t getting the attention it deserves. April Hamilton reported last night over at Publitariat that she had received a recruitment email from Simon & Schuster. They are trying to get her to become an affiliate for S&S Archway, the scam vanity press that S&S launched last fall: .. We believe Archway…

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  • March 6, 2013
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When The Atlantic Monthly published a paid article promoting Scientology a couple months ago, they were roundly castigated for lack of editorial integrity. With criticism and coverage coming from all sides, including Forbes, Techdirt, NY Magazine, and elsewhere, The Atlantic pulled the advertising and replaced it with a stub. In retrospect The Atlantic said that…

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  • February 28, 2013
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Barnes & Noble is probably going to share bad news tomorrow when they release their latest quarterly financial report. I am expecting to hear that Nook sales were poor, and given the general poor financial state and the recent news that B&N CEO Len Riggio has plans to sever the retail stores from the rump…

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  • February 15, 2013
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That’s what one Morgan Stanley analyst believes, though I have my doubts. A couple days ago Business Insider posted this one graph. It’s based on data from a recent report by Scott Devitt at Morgan Stanley, and it covers his best estimate for the revenue and profit that the Kindle ecosystem (Kindle, Kindle Fire, movies,…

  • Posted:
  • February 15, 2013
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Here’s a small footnote for the ongoing B&N death spiral. This morning Rakuten released their end of year financial statements. There’s no specific info about Kobo, but I did want to point out a few details. Rakuten’s internet services division (it includes Kobo) generated $3 billion USD in revenue last year. Their internet finance division…