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Monday News: Fan wars and Amazon’s attempt to disrupt cloud storage

Amazon’s competitors think customers are using Amazon’s cloud “to experiment,” said Jason Mendenhall, the vice president for cloud at Switch Communications, which runs one of the biggest facilities on the planet to host the computers that power the cloud. But already the interface for connecting to Amazon’s cloud is becoming a sort of de facto standard in the cloud community, because so many programmers know it. And with the growth of startups that started on Amazon, how long will it be until the “low end” cloud provider is creeping further and further up the value chain, just as “cheap” Japanese automobiles did in the US after their first, humble introduction in the 1950s?

And, unlike books and movies, cloud storage is making money for Amazon. “In the slides accompanying Amazon’s latest earnings report, one chart indicates that revenue from “Amazon Web Services, Advertising Services, and Co-branded Credit Cards” totaled $750 million in the first three months of 2013.” 

The first commenter, Courtney, writes “HOW DARE YOU EVEN COMPARE SHITTY ASS STEPHANIE MEYER TO THE QUALITY WORK THAT IS ANNE RICE HOW DARE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YOU FUCKING HAG, I HOPE YOU GET HERPES”

And Jose “My dear: Even if you dont like a book i dont get why you have to destroy it, Nazi memories perhaps?”

When Miss Articulate suggests a less ad hominem attack might be more helpful, another commenter takes the disingenuous route “It’s merely stating that destroying books is one of the things Nazis did, why get so personal?”

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

36 Comments

  1. Brie
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 07:01:35

    I only read the first Sookie book, so the spoiler doesn’t affect me, but apparently the previous book hinted at that resolution (I can’t imagine making such a change completely out of nowhere). I’m not surprised people got upset about it, though, especially those who were invested or hoping for a different outcome. What’s truly awful (besides some really over the top reactions) is the leak of information. Can you imagine something similar happening to, let’s say, the next Psy/Changeling book? I would be so angry! Especially because I have no self-control and would probably read the spoiler.

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  2. DS
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 07:05:33

    I just laid my head down and howled with laughter at the Fanrage™. I haven’t read Sookie in ages but I think I need to pick this one up. Charlaine Harris has a talent for sending fans off a cliff edge. As for Anne Rice– !

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  3. theo
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 07:42:22

    One of the level headed commenters on the fanrage page has announced that Ms. Rice posted Ms Articulate’s hometown and bio on her facebook page now. Shades of deja vu here? I will never understand an author who does this. Never. The only explanation is the voices in her head have led to a breakdown because common sense should dictate a “I’m sorry it wasn’t for you but thank you for taking the time to read it” comment (if one needs to be made at all) and nothing else! And she has no one to blame for the fanrage but herself. *shakes head*

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  4. Patricia Eimer
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 07:59:26

    She put her hometown out there? The fans may be crazy but Ms. Rice sounds like she’s boarded the train to Loco Town right there along with them. Just because someone doesn’t like your book doesn’t mean you get to harass them for it.

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  5. Annemarie
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 08:02:21

    Why are all the meltdowns vampire related? The more I read of fan meltdowns, the more relieved I am that the Internet wasn’t around when I was in junior high during my first reading of The Vampire Diaries books, because my fourteen-year-old self probably would have had a vitriolic caps-lock epic meltdown like the ones seen these days.

    People really must stop pointing to Nazi book burning whenever someone uses a book for decoupage. It immediately renders their argument invalid.

    (I stopped reading the Sookie series a few books back. Whichever one that had the entire chapter dedicated to Sookie going to Walmart and running errands — that was it for me.)

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  6. Laine
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 08:05:35

    Now I’m terrified of accidentally stumbling onto the Sookie spoiler. I’m obsessive, but hopefully not a rabid fan. Maybe I need to stay away from the internet until I’ve read it. An internet strike would force me to make a dent in the TBR pile…

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  7. library addict
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 08:33:07

    I have never read the Sookie series as I am not a vampire fan, but I get why faithful readers of the series would be displeased about the spoiler. What surprises me is that the author and her so-called loyal fans would be shocked that other fans of the series are upset. And the whole don’t-spoil-it-for-other-readers argument doesn’t play for me in this type of situation.

    I like cloud storage for syncing between my devices. But like computer backups, I use several (mostly Dropbox and Box). The only thing I have in the Amazon cloud is the MP3s I’ve bought from them and the songs from the various CDs they added for me.

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  8. Loosheesh
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 08:38:54

    @Annemarie: “Why are all the meltdowns vampire related?” – This made me laugh =D

    Never read Anne Rice, never wanted to read Anne Rice, and now I certainly will never read Anne Rice. Some of the comments on that thread are just ‘wow’, including some new -to-me ‘words’ and phrases; ‘douche canoe’ made me go ‘huh?’.

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  9. pamelia
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 08:52:12

    Bless you for the Sookie spoiler! I was dreading the experience of reading yet another sub-par HARDCOVER entry in the series just to find out the “HEA” (or whatever). I read all but the last book and the last couple have been rather beyond disappointing. This saves me a few dollars and more importantly a few hours which I can apply to reading a book I actually want to read.

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  10. Moriah Jovan
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 08:52:51

    Rice has been off her rocker for decades.

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  11. Isobel Carr
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 09:21:59

    I think Stan really kept the crazy in check (and he was just an all-around lovely guy). After he died, Ann went off the rails (remember when she became born again and was threatening to rewrite all her books to reflect her newfound religion?). I sort of view everything through that lens.

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  12. Mireya
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 09:38:10

    @theo: Nothing that the blogger herself hasn’t made public herself. The blogger has an about section in her own blog as well as her real name and email address in it. In AR’s FB page a number of fans did berate Rice, so thankfully not all are whackadoodles giving the rest of us that enjoyed her work a bad name.

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  13. Mireya
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 09:40:43

    @Moriah Jovan: Yeah. I loved a good chunk of her work, so it saddens me.

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  14. Lynn S.
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 09:44:29

    The Anne Rice thing makes me laugh. Smart authors would encourage rampant deconstruction, maybe provide happy, sparkly-style links or start a craft corner on their own website, because this means one less used book in circulation, taking away from their bottom line. Next up, anagramming your DRM-stripped epub.

    Anyone who knows their romance should have known who Sookie was going to end up with ages ago. I peeked to have my suspicion confirmed and, yep, he is exactly who I thought he would be. I gave up on Sookie a while back—about the time Harris butchered the ending of my beloved Harper Connelly series.

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  15. sula
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 09:59:18

    I don’t read the Sookie books but do watch the TV series when it becomes available on Netflix. So I read the spoiler. Huh. Well then. Would not have seen that coming. I wonder how it will impact sales.

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  16. Maddie
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:01:05

    The only thing I find offensive about the blogger is that she stated that she didn’t like the book so she cut it up or destroyed it for craft making project in order to get a rise out of people.

    I love books and I have used old books for projects too but I would never state on line that a book sucks so I destroyed it. If a book doesn’t work for me I give it away or donate them for someone else to read and enjoy. My old books are from the Salvation Army or Morris Missions.

    She is entitled to her opinions and the reaction is just plain crazy but really in this day and age did she expect anything else.

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  17. DS
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:18:30

    @Lynn S.: I also looked, and I wasn’t surprised. I thought it was the obvious choice back at the beginning. I wonder what her story arc looked like before it became so wildly popular?

    I should probably be happy that the Lily Bard series never became popular.

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  18. LG
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:21:41

    @Brie: It’s a bit like the reaction to the spoiler that was posted on DA about the way things turned out for Anne Bishop’s Dark Jewels characters, isn’t it? (Or was the Sookie book not an ARC copy? If so, then yes, ouch.) I don’t find it all that horrifying that the spoiler got out – this way, at least the fans who expected something else can either avoid that last book or have an emotional cushion built up before they read it.

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  19. Carolyn Jewel
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:22:57

    I hope nobody ever finds out that when my son was 10 or so we made a book safe from a copy of The Enchanted Forest. It was a really fun project and my son used the “safe” for years.

    Also, I don’t get why people are suddenly up in arms about Amazon S3. It’s been around for years and it’s never been any secret to developers where Amazon was headed with this. Amazon put together some really groundbreaking technology that made it possible for startups like, say, Twitter, to get off the ground with a far smaller capital investment.

    I’m always suspicious of “tech” articles that say stuff like this: “vice president for cloud at Switch Communications, which runs one of the biggest facilities on the planet to host the computers that power the cloud.” Somebody only read the press release….

    The “cloud” is the internet and the internet is diffuse. There’s no huge facility that hosts “computers that power the cloud.” There is, I’m sure, a large facility of servers owned by Switch that they offer up to developers and other companies, but they are in direct competition with Amazon.

    Amazon more or less invented the technologies and schemas that make it possible for a developer or a company not to own a server or enterprise level software. Over the last 10 years, that’s been transformative to software development. Take a look at the apps on your smart phone and feel free to whisper “Thank you, Amazon.”

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  20. Fionn Jameson
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:29:45

    @Maddie:

    UM. No. She didn’t say she hated the book so much she cut it up. She was going to cut it up anyways, regardless of her impression of the book, as the book was falling apart. Falling apart books DO NOT GET REMANDED. They got chucked into the bin and thrown out.

    Anne Rice deliberately mislead her fans by stating Miss Articulate hated her book so much she cut it up. I want to go back in time and unread all the books I’ve read of hers. What a total fruit cake.

    Furthermore, if I bought a book, I have every right to do whatever I want with it. If I want to use it as TP, I’ll do so. I’m an author and if people wanted to burn piles of my books, as long as they paid for it, I don’t give a hoot nanny.

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  21. Angela
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:36:06

    Ugh, now I don’t know if I want to click the spoiler and confirm my thoughts or not. I’ve long stuck with the idea on who Sookie’s going to end up with, but I haven’t read the last couple of books – deciding I was going to wait until this last one was out. I’m not sure I can resist knowing though :P

    ETA: Yup, I was right.

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  22. Maddie
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 10:55:57

    @Fionn

    Hospice, Hospitals all take in books either for resale or for those visiting to read so instead of chucking and filling up land fills with junk or things that are still usable donate.

    Like I posted she could do what ever she wants with the book but it seems she wanted a reaction from people for whatever reason to her destroying a book for artistic reasons.

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  23. Louise
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 11:20:14

    @Maddie

    I highly doubt that. This is not a well known blog, the only reason people know anything about it is due to Rice broadcasting it on her Facebook page

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  24. Saranna DeWylde
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 11:27:45

    At the prison where I worked (granted, jail is different than prison) the employees were fed the same food as the inmates, if they cared to eat. It’s not like you get a lunch break. You get to stuff something in your mouth that you hope isn’t squirming or crunchy, while you walk the tier. Prison food sucks. Period. Any food that you make in mass quantities like that is going to have a quality problem. That’s just how it is. The same companies that contract for school cafeteria food contract with prisons and jails. And what it boils down to? If you don’t like the food, don’t go to prison.

    I enjoy book crafts. My etsy likes are filled with books purses and book jewelry. I have the most beautiful brass HP Lovecraft and Dracula cuff bracelets. The great thing about physical books is that you can print more. I don’t get what the major upset was. It’s not like she took the book, took a giant dump on it, then posted it online as some sort of commentary. So she didn’t like it. I’m sorry, but suck it up. Further, if blogger bought the book and wanted to burn it, or take a crap on it, or use it to make paper mache vomit, she can do whatever she wants with it. The writer, or fans don’t get a say.

    @Annemarie- You and me both, on the OMG CAPS LOCK of fury. That made me laugh.

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  25. theo
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 11:30:18

    @Mireya:

    Most bloggers have some type of bio on themselves on their own site. What I had a problem with is that Rice took it that one step farther and announced it on hers which goes with my original point. Just say ‘thank you for reading it, I’m sorry it wasn’t to your liking,’ and leave it at that. Batshit crazy actions because someone doesn’t like your book are one more thing to drive people away that might have found you and read it on their own. And she’s been a little BSC for awhile now. This whole thing is just another notch in the authors-behaving-badly that seems to be occurring with more frequency.

    Maybe it’s something in the water…

    FWIW, I did try to read her after I watched Interview. Didn’t make it past the first two paragraphs because her writing wasn’t for me.

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  26. Heller
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 12:18:19

    I’m impressed with Miss Articulate’s grace under fire. She’s staying classy with everything that’s being thrown at her on that thread.

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  27. Moriah Jovan
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 13:56:39

    @Mireya: I try to ignore all that hulabaloo or shrug it off as a Crazy Artist Cuts Off Ear moment. As for the idea that Stan kept the crazy in check, well…I can’t say my husband doesn’t serve the same function at times.

    As for the physical book under question, I’m a crafter and I find paper crafts fascinating, particularly with regard to old/unwanted books, even if it IS to make a point. Here’s the thing: You’re not “desecrating” a book. You’re creating some other form of art. How is this bad?

    An object someone did not find pleasing was made into something that person found pleasing.

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  28. MaryK
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 14:04:52

    @Angela:

    Ugh, now I don’t know if I want to click the spoiler and confirm my thoughts or not. I’ve long stuck with the idea on who Sookie’s going to end up with, but I haven’t read the last couple of books – deciding I was going to wait until this last one was out. I’m not sure I can resist knowing though :P

    This! I’m very behind on the series so I don’t see how I’ll avoid spoilers before I catch up. Hopefully, I’ll at least get a couple more books read and have an idea where it’s going before I come across the spoiler.

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  29. Mireya
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 14:39:34

    @theo: I see your point. She pretty much added wood to the fire she started, which in turn sort of proves Rice’s true intent when she posted about it *sigh* She went BSC a long time ago, no argument there. As a writer, she’s the sort that people either love or hate, there does not seem to be a “happy medium” with her, so I am not surprised when people indicate they couldn’t get into her stories, which in turn makes me frown when some fans go bonkers when others dare say they don’t like her work.

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  30. MandyM
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 18:01:58

    I’m seriously impressed with Miss Articulate’s consistently courteous and open-minded response to the deluge of Anne Rice fan attacks. She totally took the wind out of the trolls’ sails. They had nowhere to go with their rants.

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  31. Luce
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 20:20:51

    My BFF linked me to the whole Pandora mess at Miss Articulate’s blog. Full disclosure: I got into Anne Rice’s novels back in 1990 and would read anything she published (up to “Memnoch, The Devil”–which came out in 1995.)

    Now, I knew that Anne had SRS BIZNESS opinions about her books. However, I would’ve never thought that, 18 years later, I wished I’d never read her books. The whole thing is really embarrassing. I’m a bookworm through and through so I understand why some people would be offended (even disgusted) by the whole business of crafting a book.

    That said, Miss Articulate did pointed out the poor condition the book was in. Also, it wasn’t the only copy of Pandora in the entire planet or (if viewed through the fannish angle) a rare first edition signed by Anne Rice herself. I’m in awe of how cool and graceful Miss Articulate was once Anne’s minions tried to dogpile her.

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  32. Susan
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 20:23:10

    How the heck was that a spoiler? It’s been pretty obvious since book one, and everything else has been just a long series-prolonging detour (altho a nice one at times). I would have been floored if it had been anyone else. (And, if this is a hoax, I will be pretty darn shocked.)

    @Lynn S.: I LOVED the Harper Connelly series. I wouldn’t say I thought CH actually butchered the ending of it, but I did feel as if she got tired of it (or sales weren’t good enough to continue) and just rushed through trying to tie some ends up.

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  33. Fiona McGier
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 22:39:19

    Oh Anne, what have you become? “Interview” was my guilty pleasure as an English major back in the mid 70s. After I got married, husband began to auto-buy all of her books for me in hardcover. I never even finished the 1st Taltos book, thought it was dull. Read Lestat’s story up to Memnoch, then the books got shelved and collect dust. The same with Laurell Hamilton, I finally had to tell husband to stop giving then both his money for producing boring stuff that I wasn’t going to read.

    As for Ms. Harris, let’s hope she has more sense than the above two writers and really stops writing about Sookie. I only made it through the 4th book and they got repetitive to me. How many times can she tell you that Sookie is so hot and great in bed that every man, no matter how long he’s been alive, wants only her? My daughter who is now in college thinks I’m way off…she reads them as soon as they come out, plus she’s addicted to True Blood which she watches on her laptop. I think I’ll hop on over to FB and offer to tell her the spoiler! ;-D

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  34. Loreen
    Apr 30, 2013 @ 10:57:21

    I collect 19th century first additions because they are beautiful as physical objects and some of the genres I like (children’s lit) were not preserved in libraries until recently, so I think they are worth keeping for the future. I just opened a book of 1900 love letters to find a flower that One of the original owners must have pressed….it gives me a feeling of continuity with the past. I’d think it a shame if someone ripped up an 1880s YA novel for a craft. However, I simply cannot get worked up about repurposing an Anne Rice novel….how many millions of these are in circulation? You could pick one up for 50 cents at the library book sale. You would think Anne Rice would have a stronger ego and not be upset by something so trifling. It is not like the blogger was trying to ban her book – she destroyed one copy of many.

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  35. Nicole
    May 03, 2013 @ 13:51:44

    @Lynn S.:
    Right? I don’t know if Harris just got sick of Harper and co, but that ending was just a big eff you to fans. I would have preferred that she not finish the series at all, because that was just the worst. Ugh. I have never read a Sookie Stackhouse book, and after reading An Ice Cold Grave (and the fact that I remembered the title years later without having to look it up…), I have no desire to do so.

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  36. YR
    May 04, 2013 @ 14:24:07

    The German fan bought her copy of the book and received it early. She spoke to her friends about the ending after reading it. I don’t blame her, I’ve done the same thing after reading many books. I go discuss it with my friends. It spread from there, word of mouth and all that. She’s not the same person that opened the spoiler thread on Amazon. That thread was opened hours after the ending was spread through the internet. I actually found it after learning of the leak through CH facebook page and went to look for them. Funny, I may not have found it if not for CH. It’s clearly marked as spoilers so whoever doesn’t want to know should/could steer clear.

    I was a fan of Sookie and CH for many years. While I agree that the ending “guy” was obvious in book 1, many things happened throughout the series to change that conclusion. But it’s not who she ends up with that has enraged many fans, including myself. It’s the lack of build-up/romance with the “end guy”. And if the spoilers are true, it doesn’t seem like any of them have an HEA, not even the beloved Sookie. Not to mention all the out of character actions that are displayed by many of the main characters.

    Like someone said above that CH butchered the ending of Harper and felt as if she got tired of it, this seems to be the case here. And if the same fans that have been lining her pockets for years voice their displeasure of how it was butchered, CH calls them entitled or malicious readers. I wonder how her tune would change if the spoilers were praise for the book? I doubt she’d be whining about the German reader then.

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