King Kills The Plant

from the pissing-off-readers dept

Stephen King has decided to stop adding installments to his online novel. This is pissing off many of the readers who have faithfully paid the money for each of the installments so far. They feel cheated, and rightfully so. I can’t understand why he didn’t realize this was going to be a problem from the very beginning.

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Comments on “King Kills The Plant”

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Ryan says:

I sympathize

I agree with King on this. I would be angry as a reader who had paid to read, but I’ve been waiting for the 4th installment of Piers Anthony’s Mode series for years now (at least, I hope I haven’t missed it, and made myself look like a fool now!), but I’ll still get it as soon as it comes out, and it’s far from done. I think that people have to understand that doing something for free is nice, but it’s not very heartening when only 46% are paying. Good will is nice, but you can’t live on it, and though King is far from eating bread crusts and water, I believe it’s important for him to set a precedent for newer, lesser-known authors who do have to subside on their publishings. It gives the decree a bit of weight and meaning.

StatGrape (user link) says:

Re: Re: I sympathize

I think he actually paid much attention to Napster, and attempted to prove that people were willing to pay for something original if they knew the money wasn’t going directly to the pockets of corporations.

It didn’t work, but it wasn’t a bad plan. I admire the testicular fortitude required to stick to his threats of killing the project if an improper percentage shelled out. It’s just an experiment in consumer honesty that failed.

Mike (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: I sympathize

Failed? Failed for who? Stephen King just pocketed a lot of money. His readers, however, shelled out their money and got an incomplete story. I don’t think that’s such a great thing.

He should have done something like other artists have done where you get them to pay for something upfront, and then you deliver the completed works.

Ryan says:

Re: Re: Re:2 I don't sympathize

What did he expect? 46% paying sounds incredibly high to me, especially on the internet. I’d like to know what the percentage is for a regular book, considering King gets no money from all the people who check it out from a library, borrow from a friend, or buy second-hand. So now he continues to write his book, pockets the money, and publishes a paper version. Really no skin off his nose at all, but all those people who did pay are SOL, and will have to buy (or borrow) the paper version to find out how it ends.

Ryan says:

Re: Re: Re:3 I don't sympathize

Just a disclaimer, all the guys here are seperate Ryans (it was even confusing me!). I wonder how common the name Ryan is in the business world (maybe we’re all finely tuned for it 😉 )?

I think that Stephen King is being a bit of an A-hole by punishing his loyal readers that did, out of loyalty pay per chapter.

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