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This is an important post, particularly after all the furor over fake reviews, thank you for sharing your knowledge (I also blogged about the Vine Program which is a highly respectable effort on the part of Amazon to ensure the quality of reviews). I agree with everything said by Laurie Carlson, including the fact that a review should always indicate where one got the book!AND a review should be well-structured, balanced and judgmental AND come from a reviewer that has done several respectable quality reviews in the past, or else! Keeping these simple rules in mind, you, as a reader, won't be misled! Certainly that is the way I do it, though my decision to buy is ultimately based on the free sample that Amazon, in its great marketing wisdom, allows you to read before deciding!
I like your position, Joe, it's something that needs to be said - and hopefully publishers will sit up and listen. No question about it, B&N has to bring the fight with Amazon beyond the nuts and bolts of e-readers production and into the e-platform area, i.e. content. It really is all about content and that's something Amazon seems to have understood long before anyone else.Their platform is by far the most reader/buyer friendly, what with forums, readers reviews, search by keywords, like buttons, best seller lits by endless sorts of categories etc Here is of course where DRM comes into play. It locks readers into a platform, if I understand this right, and of course Amazon won't abandon it for that reason. B&N has just tactically punched back by refusing to sell in its 750+ stores printed books published by Amazon since Amazon grabbed digital rights to titles that B&N are selling in printed form and not allowing B&N to sell the ebook version. Add DRM to the mix and it becomes explosive! Publishers need to really think about this and develop their own strategy to reach out to readers (and stop worrying about piracy - with or without DRM it will always exist)...I have no idea how this is going to play out in the end, but it's pretty nasty for us writers, especially newbies on whom publishers don't want to take chances anymore...since they don't seem ready to take chances on themselves either!
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Feb 1, 2012