Ebook Authors Continue To See Self-Publishing Stigma Disappear

from the no-more-barriers dept

As the recent news about ebooks has mostly revolved around the price-fixing settlement that was just approved, it's worth pointing out, or reiterating, how the ebook market continues to take off despite being a digital marketplace with all the same potential pitfalls as the recording industry. Despite those potential troubles, we continue to see a rise in the popularity and saleability of self-published authors, long sufferers of the antiquated myth that if you weren't published by a big publishing house you weren't really published at all.

Take this recent story from CNN, which details how Amazon coincided their release of several new e-readers and tablets with a press bit showing how 27 of the top 100 Amazon eBooks are Kindle Direct Publishing books. Considering the outlook on self-publishing before e-publishing came to be somewhat commonplace, numbers like this are significant.
"Most of my months are six-figure months," said Hugh Howey, a 37-year-old Florida author whose "Wool" series of digital books was highlighted by Amazon. "It's more than I ever hoped to make in a year."

The company says some authors, including Theresa Ragen, who appeared in a promotional video during the Amazon event, have sold hundreds of thousands of books.
The article goes on to note how some of these now-successful self-published authors are the same people that could have given up after receiving a dozen rejection slips for their books from agents and publishers. Perhaps more to the point, twenty years ago these authors would have been forced to give up on those books, because the publishing companies were the gatekeepers and publishing books only worked economically because of the kind of scale those publishers could command. Digital printing alleviated some of the need for that scale and allowed for self-publishing, except that then a combination of publishers and brick-and-mortar bookstores acted as the next barrier for self-published authors, such that few in the public could even find a way to buy these books.

With the rise of the eBook, the only remaining barriers are the ability to get noticed and the ablility to write a compelling book.
"Fact is that authors no longer need a publisher," Bernard Starr wrote at The Huffington Post. "And more and more writers are awakening to the realization that if you are not a high-profile author who can command large sales, a traditional publisher will do little for you beyond editing and printing your book."

For Howey, author of the "Wool" series, the direct-publishing platform has opened up a life he never imagined was possible -- one where he is paid to write full-time.
Experiences like Howey's are important to highlight, because the inevitable response from detractors of eBook self-publishing will be to point out that it is only a small percentage of self-published authors that are making significant money. Even the CNN article says as much. My response is simple: so what? Did the old system, under which publishers and bookstores acted as gatekeepers, not have similar results, with only a fraction of authors making significant money from their books? And what of all the authors and books who would never be heard under that system? What of the manuscripts that would lay dusty and alone in the drawer?

That is the true benefit of self-publishing in the digital age. As the barriers come down and sales go up, the stigma of self-publishing will be buried under all the dollars previously un-published authors are collecting. This despite their playing in a digital realm that would be open to piracy, if people simply refused to support authors. But that isn't happening. Sales are on the rise, and culture is rising with them.


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  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 12:12am

    " press bit showing how 27 of the top 100 Amazon eBooks are Kindle Direct Publishing books."

    A little investigating would show reasons for this, from the absence of major titles as ebooks, ebook pricing, and the willingness of these authors to market online specifically to ebook holders.

    You haven't seen the major publishers turn the corner yet and start pushing ebooks directly. When that happens, the large gorillas will likely knock the little monkeys out of the trees.

     

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  2.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 12:26am

    Re:

    "the absence of major titles as ebooks"

    Can you think of any specific titles that would fit this assertion? I had a quick look and I can't think of any popular title that's not available in eBook format. Certainly the current Amazon UK top 10 is all in eBook format, and mostly from major publishers.

    "ebook pricing"

    Yeah, the major publishers are scared shitless of eBooks and have deliberately priced themselves out of the overall market for the time being - as most here have been saying for a while. They need to listen to customers to make the sales - as people have also been saying.

    "the willingness of these authors to market online specifically to ebook holders"

    My God, somebody selling a product actually marketing to the target audience! Whatever next?

    "You haven't seen the major publishers turn the corner yet and start pushing ebooks directly. When that happens, the large gorillas will likely knock the little monkeys out of the trees."

    Seriously, though, so what? Yes, major player may start dominating the top 100 again when they get their arses in gear and join the 21st century like so many have been asking them to do. In the meantime, however, it's being very much proven that eBooks can be successful and that authors don't necessarily need publishers in order to sell. Perhaps their domination of the top 100 is short-lived, but that is not the only way to measure success nor the ability of an author to make a living without depending on a publisher who won't attract their actual market.

     

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  3.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 12:43am

    Re:

    Nope big publishers gonna dissapear a slow death that's what this article is trying to tell. The days where big names can leech off artists & authors are waning. They're the dinosaurs on the road to extinction, while the little mammals gonna thrive on the gap they leave behind.
    The one who benefit this trend are the authors and readers, we'll see more diversity (stuff that used to be rejected by snug agent & publishers is gonna hit the market anyway).
    Also book prices are finally going to drop, because they won't need to sustain these antiquated behemots anymore and because there will be more authors competing with each other.

     

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  4.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 12:52am

    I love the smugness of the little mammals, though. They laugh and point at the dinosaurs, because surely the mammals would not be so stupid as to let a giant asteroid hit their planet. No, no, those mammals are so smart and so forward-thinking no asteroid would dare.

    They could certainly not make the mistakes of the dinosaurs. The dinosaurs are to be scorned, never pitied. Unrepentant smugness is the mammals' birthright.

    The smartest mammals of all will sell consulting services to the dinosaurs telling them how to survive the asteroid holocaust. After the mammals have collected all the dino-money, they will hold seminars: "Be small! Weigh under 50 pounds! Eat tiny amounts!" They will then offer to sell a collection of motivational audiotapes as the dinosaurs leave the exposition hall, bewildered.

    And the mammals will laugh their asses off at the dinosaurs: "they just don't get it, do they! Ha ha ha!"

     

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    Mr Big Content, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 12:56am

    The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    The only reason the pirates haven't bankrupted these authors yet is because they're freeloading off the vigorous legal-enforcement campaigns of the legitimate publishers.

    Once those publishers go to the wall, these so-called "self-publishing" (self-prostituting, more like) so-called "authors" will discover they have no more REAL friends, and then the pirates will pounce and leave them all without a penny for all their hard work. And all the money they earn in the meantime is just an advance against this future theft of intellectual property, just an IOU until payback time.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 1:07am

    Re:

    Yup, and then there will be a minor flood or similar event. and all the little mammals will die, leaving just the stupid dinosaurs, looking even not so stupid again.

    Smugness is the first step towards failure.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 1:27am

    Re: Re:

    Yup, and then there will be a minor flood or similar event. and all the little mammals will die, leaving just the stupid dinosaurs, looking even not so stupid again.

    Eh, maybe, maybe not. If not, though, the mammals seem invariably to credit their own cleverness, rather than any other factor (luck, circumstances, novelty), for their success.

    A lot of the ideas proffered on Techdirt are pretty good, but I think that the message will have a hard time swaying even the moderates because of the massive amount of smugness in which it is couched.

    There is so little sympathy for "legacy players" - both artists and publishers. These artists and publishers, let's recall, provided everyone with the "culture" they are now so eager to defend. But this is forgotten in an orgy of grave-dancing.

    Have artists and publishers done wrong in the past? Some have. Have some overstepped their bounds? Of course. Does that give everyone with a new idea the absolute right to piss on them and everyone like them when they're down? Here, apparently so.

    The young will inherit the earth, but that doesn't make it classy for them to go to the nearest nursing home and start singing happy songs about how soon all these old folks and their stupid old ideas will be dead, and how awesome it will be that they're gone, and how much we hate them all for ever having existed especially now that they're just a drain on the system.

    Oh, I'm sorry, "classy" is a moral argument - only economic arguments need apply in the 21st century. What does it matter if some old people suffer as long as you have a new way to make money that may or may not cause slightly less suffering than the old system?

    Here's an economic argument for everyone with a new business model, or a blog about new business models: if you want to reach and convert the maximum amount of hearts and minds to your way of thinking, you can probably do so by having good ideas AND not being a raging self-righteous douchebag about them.

    And let me reiterate: just because the old guard sometimes acted like raging douchebags is not an excuse to act that way back. Your lust for revenge is just as petty as their desire to entrench their position.

     

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  8.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 1:39am

    Re:

    You haven't seen the major publishers turn the corner yet and start pushing ebooks directly. When that happens, the large gorillas will likely knock the little monkeys out of the trees.

    A couple of things to say about this.

    Firstly is that it will be too little too late, the strategic positioning that they could of done is now well and truly over and any marketing they could do to THIS MARKET which is becoming less and less niche will be mollified by the fact they will have to compete on a level playing field now.

    Secondly the amusing assumption of yours that they will knock the 'little' guys out of the picture is just that. An amusing assumption that bears no resemblance to reality and to historical precedent (ie: 'mainstream' Music Artists trying to destroy Indie Artists ).

    In fact I would posit that the 'large gorillas' will be stomped on by the huge elephant in the room... CUSTOMERS!

    You know those strange creatures that actually will buy what they like, tell others what they like, and using eBook marketing strategies can actually read excerpts before they buy leading to the likes of 'mainstream" authors having to produce something that people will actually read and enjoy instead of relying on the marketing hype of blurbs and MSM reviews.

     

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    donald mcintosh, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 1:43am

    myth

    Hardly a myth. The fact still is that only the best are published by the major houses. Sure they make the odd mistake - like missing the fact that pornography sells - but essentially they get it right.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 1:47am

    Re: myth

    Define "best"...

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 1:48am

    Re: Re:

    You know those strange creatures that actually will buy what they like, tell others what they like, and using eBook marketing strategies can actually read excerpts before they buy leading to the likes of 'mainstream" authors having to produce something that people will actually read and enjoy instead of relying on the marketing hype of blurbs and MSM reviews.

    Because they could never do ANY of those things before!

    The Internet changed some things, but it didn't change human nature. If the monkeys aren't knocked out of the trees by the gorillas, they will probably just grow up into gorillas themselves. All the while protesting "who, us? We're nothing like those gorillas! We could never become gorillas! Those gorillas deserved to die, not like us, we are just nice monkeys!"

    Upstarts want to disrupt and kill off the successful old guard, and the successful old guard wants to stay entrenched. Guess what happens when upstarts become successful?

    Hey, your moral high horse looks awfully familiar. Oh, right, it's the same exact one those guys you're making fun of used to ride!

     

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  12.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 2:16am

    Re: Re: Re:

    So, your point is that we should do nothing to improve things because the long term effects might turn out to be more negative than they seem now? Or is it that we should sit back and accept whatever bullshit gets thrown at us by incumbents because nothing perfect ever happens? That we should accept an industry that offers terrible choice because perfect choice will never occur? That because some new players may do things badly in the future, we should accept anything bad thrown at us by current players?

    Hey, at least ACs are switching from actively attacking customers and new authors to simply trying to spread doom and gloom. That's an improvement, I guess.

     

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  13.  
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    Zanny, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 2:24am

    Wool is fantastic, about half way through it at the mo.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 2:29am

    Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    Brilliant parody. +1

     

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  15.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 2:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    So, your point is that we should do nothing to improve things because the long term effects might turn out to be more negative than they seem now?

    Nope, I'm saying that you should have enough humility to recognize that maybe things got bad for a reason, and that since you don't seem to spend any real time trying to understand that reason, you will have a tough time avoiding the same mistakes made by others. Others who, though you're loathe to admit it, are probably not that different from you.

    Or is it that we should sit back and accept whatever bullshit gets thrown at us by incumbents because nothing perfect ever happens?

    No, but perhaps you should not be so quick to ignore the contributions, and dance on the graves of others while pretending the sunshine coming out of your own ass is pure wonder and light.

    That we should accept an industry that offers terrible choice because perfect choice will never occur?

    No, but pretending you offer (the closest possible thing to) perfect choice and a solution to all the problems of the past just because you're new and different isn't helpful or honest either.

    That because some new players may do things badly in the future, we should accept anything bad thrown at us by current players?

    No, by all means, ignore the warnings of those who came before. Just have a bacchanalian rave celebrating their destruction. As long as you never understand why things are the way they are, you're sure to make them that way again someday.

    ~ ~ ~

    Once again, someone here fails to see the point. This isn't about THEM. We know about THEM. Nobody can shut up about THEM.

    It's about YOU. You decry the inability of the "old guard" to see themselves objectively and change, all the while with your fingers in your ears humming at the top of your lungs.

    This group's attitude is toxic and it turns off reasonable, moderate people who you might want to convert, who might like to become advocates of your ideas. But they won't if they think they're joining up with a group of assholes who are focused five times as much on hating the current status quo as they are about creating a new one.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 2:47am

    i thought monkeys couldnt become gorilla's they are different species? can someone please try a different metaphor

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:04am

    Re:

    i thought monkeys couldnt become gorilla's they are different species? can someone please try a different metaphor

    Quite right! How about:

    Hey, as soon as we kick all these humans off the farm and the animals run things, everything will be different! All animals are equal!

     

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  18.  
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    explicit coward (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:14am

    Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    Because pirates pirate for one reason, and one reason alone:

    THEY WANT EVERYTHING FOR FREE

    Damn freeloaders...

    They wouldn't pirate because:

    - The title is not available in their country.
    - They want a digital version of their bought paper version.
    - The buyable digital version comes with unpleasant restrictions like DRM.
    - They deem the pricing of the digital version unfair.
    - They just want a sneek peek to see if the book is to their liking.

    No, no, no. They just pirate because THEY WANT EVERYTHING FOR FREE!

    With one exemption: prostitutes.

     

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  19.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:14am

    Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "So, your point is that we should do nothing to improve things because the long term effects might turn out to be more negative than they seem now?"

    Actually, I think his point is that if you kill off the big players, someone else will rise to be a big player and they will probably be held in the same disdain that you hold the legacy players now. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

     

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  20.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:17am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    So, you distort my views to pretend it's about "us" vs "them", and continue to attack the strawman you've created, huh? What a shame reality is so hard for you that you have to lie about the very people you're talking to, and then act shocked when they don't accept your fantasy versions of their own opinions.

    Most people seem to be fine with the actual views I hold and the suggestions I've made (no DRM, reasonable pricing, availability even across international borders, no artificial restrictions, etc.), in order to reduce the impact of piracy and prevent audiences from looking to infringement as their only option. They also seem perfectly fine with benefits of new digital technologies, including the fact that new authors need not be held back by legacy systems if they don't wish to, and that there are ways of making money that don't depend on the business models of the last century. I don't hold any extreme positions myself, except for heavy criticism of the way that the content industries have attacked their own consumer base, which really should be clear as counter-productive to anyone who doesn't see the whole thing as "us vs. them".

    Why do you have a problem with any of this? You've never offered any reasonable explanations. You've never offered anything but lies and personal attacks, accusing me of all sorts of criminal activity and personal failing for merely speaking about my own position as a consumer.

    There's only one person who regularly posts who's divisive, offensive, not to mention childish and single-minded, and it ain't me. As I've often said, please offer any reasonable comment you wish and open discussion in a polite manner. But, judging from the personal insults and attacks above, and failure to address any of the real questions I was asking, I'll assume you wish to continue that obnoxious persona.

     

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  21.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Perhaps, but in the meantime change will have occurred, most of it beneficial. Should we not have started mass printing books because the corporate publishing system isn't magically perfect compared to the old systems that preceded it?

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    There's only one person who regularly posts who's divisive, offensive, not to mention childish and single-minded, and it ain't me.

    Ain't me either. I looked at your post history and you seem to spend most of your time and energy arguing with some other guy. He's got you on the hook good. Seriously, go look for yourself. He isn't me, though.

    And there are lots of people who post unreasonable and borderline incoherent stuff all the time but since most of them are on your side that's probably tough to see.

    ~ ~ ~

    How many handwritten letters have you sent your Congressperson this month about these issues? (Not your futile fight with the other guy, these IP issues).

     

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  23.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 4:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "I looked at your post history and you seem to spend most of your time and energy arguing with some other guy."

    Well, if I mistook you for somebody else, I apologise. Hard to tell you apart, what with the refusing to supply a basic handle and all :)

    However, you did launch into personal attacks where I only ever try to be reasonable, except when dealing with obnoxious trollish commenters who are nothing of the sort. Perhaps you can address what you think is wrong with my actual opinions rather than telling me I'm the problem for daring to voice my own views?

    "And there are lots of people who post unreasonable and borderline incoherent stuff all the time but since most of them are on your side that's probably tough to see."

    You're the one who sees this as "sides". Why am I responsible for what anybody else is saying, by the way? I don't know those people any more than I know you - whoever you are...

    "How many handwritten letters have you sent your Congressperson this month about these issues?"

    If you had actually bothered to read my comments and profile, you'd notice at least 2 things wrong with this request. See if you can spot them.

     

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  24.  
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    Rikuo (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 4:18am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Dude, your post, when voiced out loud, sounds just like a homeless guy spewing forth "The END is at HAND!" and other sorts of doom and gloom. You sound just like a "The End is Nigh!" prophet.

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 4:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Oh fine. Congressperson, MP, local magistrate, whoever is responsible for governing your part of the world. I don't know what the second problem is, I didn't have a chance to wade through all 5700 posts (not kidding).

    How much effort do you spend writing 5700 posts? Would you say you spend more or less effort on direct activism?

    Your opinions may be more reasonable than your compatriots' but how are you effecting change with them? You may not be responsible for other people's posts but is it really just PaulT and his reasonable opinions vs the world? If nobody is going to organize and there is no plan and no concerted effort, what's going to change (well, except things that would have anyway)? This site has been up for what, 15 years now? Complaining about the same sorts of issues?

    Somebody heard that eternal vigilance was a bitch but got the idea that bitching was eternal vigilance. Time to move on to phase 2.

    Turning off the Internet to stop SOPA was not a victory. It was avoidance of defeat. And the momentum died quickly. The Apollo program put a guy on the moon in less than 10 years, and the last change to a major state's copyright law that was a big improvement for free culture was...when? What?

     

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  26.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 4:44am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Oh fine. Congressperson, MP, local magistrate, whoever is responsible for governing your part of the world."

    ...and which person would I be able to write to who would be able to direclty change the actions of private industry? Most of those posts you didn't bother to read were regarding things like DVD region coding, the inability of industry to adapt to the modern world and their failure to response to the demands of their customers. Which congressperson can I write to that would change that?

    Oh yeah, none, since this is criticism of private industry, not government action, and no government can force a business to adapt a particular business model. Nor would I want them to.

    "How much effort do you spend writing 5700 posts? "

    So, how many posts have you written? Oh yeah, you hide your identity so you can't get attacked for posts on prior articles. Funny.

    Really, the best criticism you have is that I've been regular poster on a site for a number of years and sometimes make numerous comments in a day? You also parlay that into the utterly baseless assumption this this is all I ever do related to the subject? Weak.

    "Turning off the Internet to stop SOPA was not a victory."

    That didn't happen. The protests that actually happened have stopped SOPA in its tracks for the time being, which was their stated aim. Is this a problem, or are you one of those idiots who believes that since the people trying to push through SOPA diodn't magiacally give up and retuire on the same sday that it was a failure?

    "the last change to a major state's copyright law that was a big improvement for free culture was...when? What?"

    I'm wondering how we got from an article concerning the success of self-published authors to this. Any chance you can stick to the points being discussed?

    In answer to your misdirection, I'd say that no specific copyright law will ever be an improvement for free culture. But that's not the point being discussed.

     

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  27.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 4:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Paul,

    I suspect arguing with this person, like most trolls and people with a vested interest in the status quo who cannot understand the old maxim of "evolve or die" is like masturbating with a cheese grater - An amusing concept but ultimately futile and extremely painful.

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 5:01am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Write to any lawmaker. Abolish copyright. Prohibit DRM for the public good.

    If you really think government has no role in the solution, what have you done to change private industry?


    I'm wondering how we got from an article concerning the success of self-published authors to this. Any chance you can stick to the points being discussed?


    I'm wondering who appointed you moderator of the discussion. Don't like it? You have the option of not responding. Exercise it. Or don't. You can also not respond to the other guy, your nemesis.


    So, how many posts have you written? Oh yeah, you hide your identity so you can't get attacked for posts on prior articles. Funny.


    Why is me acting in my own self-interest funny? I don't make the rules, but I sure am not going to use them to shoot myself in the foot.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 5:05am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    Yeah, but a small percentage of the people enjoy the cheese grater and just can't resist it. I'm sure they have websites that cater to that sort of thing. Why ruin another person's enjoyment, especially if they aren't hurting anybody?

    It's a victimless crime at best.

     

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  30.  
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    G Thompson (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 5:14am

    Re: myth

    Have you actually read any of the "best" lately? I would refer you to Stephen Kings latest tripe but that would be probably classified as an assault.

    Oh and supposedly the best also includes Twilight! Nuff said

     

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  31.  
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    PaulT (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 5:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    "Write to any lawmaker. Abolish copyright. Prohibit DRM for the public good."

    You see, this is the sort of thing you're failing at. You seem to ascribe positions to me and then criticise me for not following those positions up. However, I don't hold those positions in the first place! Strawman attacks.

    I don't push or ask for the abolition of copyright. I think it's too restrictive and is being greatly abused at the moment, but I've never called for the abolition of it.

    DRM is a private licencing issue, albeit one that some countries have tried to enshrine in law via the likes of the DMCA. It has its place in rentals and other non-purchase environments, but not as the bludgeoning tool many have tried to use it as. I don't wish for its prohibition, only its correct usage.

    "If you really think government has no role in the solution, what have you done to change private industry?"

    I've voiced my concerns as a customer directly and boycotted products by those entities I feel are doing things wrongly or trying to remove my rights in order to protect their profits. I've also purchased a great many products from artists and companies I believe are doing things correctly. You'd know this, of course, if you bothered to know my position before you attacked me, instead of attacking me for the position you wish I held.

    I'm wondering why you think that the government has to step in and save the industry. The entire point of the article is that the industry will thrive even if the publishing arm fails. Government interference in business models can be very bad, as we've seen from the disastrous attempts to prop up parts of the music industry rather than allow market forces to change it.

    "I'm wondering who appointed you moderator of the discussion."

    So, you see nothing wrong with derailing a thread into irrelevant areas? This is not a moderated discussion, but you would seem to be the kind of person that makes moderation necessary on other forums.

    "Why is me acting in my own self-interest funny?"

    Well, at least you admit you're concerned with your own interest rather than an honest discussion on the matter at hand.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  32.  
    icon
    Ninja (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 5:59am

    Shocker, the publishers are losing the vanguard and will be pretty much useless in the future. Bravo! I'd be scared shit and would jump in and publish at reasonable prices to keep myself ahead. But no, let us keep our titles away or artificially priced at insane levels so ppl will actually go for cheaper, saner experiences. Way to keep your business afloat.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  33.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 6:00am

    Re: Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    "They wouldn't pirate because:

    - The title is not available in their country.
    - They want a digital version of their bought paper version.
    - The buyable digital version comes with unpleasant restrictions like DRM.
    - They deem the pricing of the digital version unfair.
    - They just want a sneek peek to see if the book is to their liking."

    No, it's:

    - The title isn't released YET.
    - The digital version isn't released YET
    - They won't accept the product as offered
    - They won't pay market price, but won't do without
    - They want to read the whole thing to see if they might have paid for it otherwise.

    It's not that they want it for free, it's just that it's really easy to come up with an excuse why they got it for nothing.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 6:01am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re:

    PaulT, honestly, and this is purely my opinion, I'd wager that the person you're responding to is one of the usual ACs. Except, and again this is purely my opinion, said AC is now trying a different tactic. Notice how they have not directly attacked you or called you a pirate? But they have insinuated a few things about you (namely that all you do is write post about your extremist position).

    I believe this is probably one of the usual ACs, but due to their inability to write anything original which leads to them being called out without fail (as in the way they write is recognizable to all) they have now moved on to something new. Namely not calling you flat out a pirate and trying to sound reasonable. But look at the way things have gotten off topic rather quickly and you are now (essentially) being forced to reply to him for things you've not stated. Seem a bit familiar?

    My recommendation is stop responding. Simply say, "Yes, AC, when the old status quos finally die out the ones who replace them will be no better. You are 100% correct despite your lack of evidence and supporting facts to back up said statement. We're done here because there's no way you don't know the future." Then just move on and discuss things with others.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  35.  
    identicon
    Gregg, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 6:34am

    The exact same restriction to writers vs publishers happened to musicians back in the day. Thanks to recording and mixing programs on computers that allow musicians to create high quality recordings in their own home and independant music stores or file sharing used for distribution; allowed thousands of musicians to by-pass the recording industry to get their music out. Not that recording industries are useful, but like the publishing industry, they only choose the type of music that they think will sell, not what everyone might by.

    This ability for writers to publish their books might flood the market with some bad books, but we'll see some masters coming to the fore front because the publishing industry isn't filtering these books out when they don't fit the publishing industries criteria for "what sells". It would be refreshing to see creativity again instead of a steady stream of mystry and fantasy novels with the exact same formula coming out.

    I might puke on the next release of "50 shades of the Lady with the Vampire tatoo" ebook!

    Long live the artist.... short death to the censoring middle manager!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    icon
    explicit coward (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 7:10am

    Re: Re: Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    You have a bad opinion about mankind - that's ok.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    icon
    dennis deems (profile), Sep 11th, 2012 @ 7:22am

    Re: Re: Re:

    See kids, this is why it's a bad idea to get drunk and then go post things on the internet.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 7:39am

    Re: Re: Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    "No, it's:

    - The title isn't released YET.
    - The digital version isn't released YET
    - They won't accept the product as offered
    - They won't pay market price, but won't do without
    - They want to read the whole thing to see if they might have paid for it otherwise.

    It's not that they want it for free, it's just that it's really easy to come up with an excuse why they got it for nothing."

    No, it's

    - The title isn't released and never will be.
    - The digital version isn't released and never will be.
    - They won't accept the product in it's crippled and often times barely functional state.
    - They won't pay the artificially high and inflated price we set. (Especially when given that the physical version of the same product cost as much, and in the case of literature, often times LESS THAN the digital offering.
    - They don't want to get gipped on inferior offerings. (Watch a movie trailer, or even a book trailer some time. You're hooked and prepared to be entertained. Then you experience the full offering and more often than not come away underwhelmed and realizing you got taken and suckered in by false advertising ala the "amazing" trailer.)

    It's not that they want it for free, it's just really easy to come up with an excuse to not pay when you don't have to do without. Especially when those who distribute the content go out of their way to not meet market demands. And sorry to say, but contrary to popular and misguided belief, the customer is always right. And the customers want to give you their money, but you want to take it and then add restrictions and conditions that outside of the entertainment industries would be laughed at and viewed as ridiculous/failures in any other consumer service industry.

    When I can get a full cash refund for a bad meal and not one for a bad movie, you have a problem. When I can buy a new car at a dealership and return it within 30 days because it doesn't meet my minds and not do the same with a piece of software that is buggy because I "opened the box", you have a problem. I could list plenty other examples, but suffice it to say entitlement is not relegated to only the "pirates" or "people who want stuff free". It's more of a problem and feeling that you and the industries you support have. More so than any pirate.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    identicon
    relghuar, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 7:59am

    Just wait!!

    "Sales are on the rise, and culture is rising with them."

    Don't worry, it's just temporary. Until the publishers find a way to screw it up.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 8:21am

    Re: Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    you're preaching to the choir

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    DG Sandru, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 10:25am

    Don't liten to the naysayers

    I wrote a really, good novel
    The publishers did not marvel
    The agents seemed to be aloof
    You know, my novel is not a goof
    They tell me that suicide is ahead
    Self-publish, youíre as good as dead
    But, if I donít put my story in print
    My writing will become extinct
    Iíll wonder all my life, what if
    The ďexpertsĒ had a selfish motif
    I did not listen to their verdict
    And, my novel I self publish it
    The heck with the crusty naysayer
    My book will be in print forever

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    Colonel Panik, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 10:42am

    Ebooks

    Back in 1989, Ben Bova wrote "Cyberbooks"

    Done! Bova covered the subject from top to bottom.
    While giving us the story on Ebooks he also took
    the publishing industry to task. The Robber Barron's
    of Wall Street learned their trade from "Publishing".

    If you plan to publish, please go independent. The
    Ebook publishers also learned from the traditional
    book publishers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:44pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    mm difcult choice a gorilla that trys to arms strong hes view or a rasonable monkey soon to be gorilla, that if it had not learned anything from the past gorilla will end like the old one.
    i think i will take the monkey soon to be gorilla because at the time is giving what i want at the price i want when i want, the gorilla on the other hand don't seem to want my money :D

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 3:52pm

    Re: Re:

    but if the animal start behaving like the humas then the insects will kick the animals and this will continiue till at some point the new boss learns to please the the people that suports him

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 7:45pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: The Pirates Are Just Lying In Wait

    You forgot to add:

    -The title will never be avaliable because of regional restrictions on the world wide web.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Sep 11th, 2012 @ 9:14pm

    Most authors don't make it

    Exactly! The cruel economics of writing don't go away. Most writers will never live off it.

    But with self-publishing, you cut out the middleman so you free resources. It makes the pie bigger for those left standing -- producers and consumers.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    identicon
    David Biddle, Sep 20th, 2012 @ 1:08pm

    The Future's Not Here Yet

    This is a great piece. You make a lot of important points. I would add that so far few indie authors are making a crap load of money, but that the point is not to be a millionaire with "six-figure sales" monthly, but to earn a decent living. You're right that getting noticed is a barrier. I would say that publishing quality stories and non-fiction isn't so much a barrier as a goal. Over time, and I mean the next decade, a lot of indies are going to be able to lay claim to a "decent living" with maybe sales of $4,000 - $6,000 a month, just like teachers, accountants, and IT programmers. Nothing fancy, nothing earth shattering, just food on the table, a mortgage payment, and savings for kids' college payments. Working hard and being creative will be the norm.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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