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Ebooks - but not in the UK - Ed's journal
Ebooks - but not in the UK
Dear publishers of books I happen to rather enjoy.
I know it hasn't escaped your attention that there's a growing market for ebooks out there. My eReader is getting close to my 'most favourite gadget'.

And there's a lot of advantages to electronics distribution of books - lets face it, most of the cost of your book is in the 'overhead' of editing, promoting, paying the author - but with an ebook, your distribution costs become very very small.

And you don't waste a profligate quantity of 'dead tree'. So I'm actually quite a happy customer - I would actually rather buy an ebook these days, than a treebook - even at the same price.

But what continues to annoy me is that you think I'm some how prepared to pay _more_ for a book that I cannot share with my friends. Or worse, not allow me to buy an electronic copy, despite having released one in some countries.

Take for example:

Both books that come cheaper in hardcopy than digital.
Both books that I _cannot_ buy electronically in the UK, despite being able to buy a hardcopy, or an electronic copy if my IP address said 'in the US'.

Seriously? What are you thinking? By all means charge me the 'dead tree' book price, and keep the distribution and publishing cost as profit - in return for giving me the convenience of not having to store another paperback. Or even a hardback. I'd be quite happy if you start selling ebooks at 'hardbook price now, paperback price when the paperback is available' - it's worth it for one I really want to read, just so I _don't_ have to lug a hardback around with me when I'm reading it.
I'll even overlook how I can't lend a copy out - for now, at least. But you might want to consider that, as most book buyers in the world like to share something good with their friends.

But you know, despite all the DRM in the world, it actually isn't that hard to bypass - at a pretty fundamental level, if you intend me to be able to read it some of the time, it's next to impossible to stop me reading it _any_ time. In any way I like.

But I'm a believer in supporting authors and the publishing industry in general, because I recognise that if I buy stuff, they'll create more stuff.
I would buy both these books now, on the basis of recommendations. I may well still consider doing so, if I pirated them, and found them 'worthy'. But there's always a chance I'd find it terrible, and not bother. Or if you never get around to making it available for me to do so, you'll never get my money. I _have_ bought ebooks that I didn't 'have' to - there's several authors I have done this with already, because I like their stuff and want the convenience of an electronic edition of my favourite book.

But to _not_ sell it to me, when it's probably easier to pirate it than it would be to find a site and type in my credit card numbers anyway - not to mention 'free' - is ... actually just rude. And stupid.
Please stop it.
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tya From: tya Date: March 18th, 2010 09:34 am (UTC) (Link)
It's the main reason I've not bothered with the eBook readers on the market, firstly actually finding books that I want to read, and secondly the books that I can get are shockingly expensive for something which costs a fraction to produce and distribute compared to real books!

I'll just be buying more book cases. Deep shelves that I can double stack. ;-)
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