Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view


Monday News: 8% of ebook titles account for 50% of ebook sales; Texas man arrested over overdue library book; Unique bookish gift.

Monday News: 8% of ebook titles account for 50% of ebook...

In the two year period between April 1, 2010 and May 21, 2012, 1.3 million individual titles have been purchased and that Amazon, BN, Apple and Sony account for 98% of all retail ebook sales. That leaves 2% to divide between Kobo, Smashwords, All Romance eBooks, and the like.

I’m not sure I agree with McIlroy’s final conclusion – that ebooks are having a significant role in reducing industry dominance by the largest publishers. He states that in 2004, the top 5 held 65.1% of the market. That large publishers supply only 8% of the ebook titles and achieve 50% of ebook sales doesn’t mean that their market dominance is declining, only that it has achieved 50% of the ebook market. What is their percentage of the print market? Is it lower than 65.1%? Higher? Looking at the publisher position in the marketplace without considering print component is looking at only half the picture and lends itself to faulty conclusions. Thad McIlroy – Future Of Publishing

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Wednesday News: Is the long tail driven by quality or quantity; Cookie tracking replaced by ID tracking (more ominous); BN refreshes the Nook Glow

Wednesday News: Is the long tail driven by quality or quantity;...

I have to apologize for not posting any news yesterday. I went to bed early and just forgot!

One company named as a partner in Microsoft’s announcement on Wednesday, MediaBrix, says it offers “proprietary emotional targeting” to “reach game players at natural, critical points in game play where they are most receptive to brand messages.” “There is going to be an economic incentive to find out when people are most impulsive and vulnerable,” said Ryan Calo, assistant professor at the University of Washington School of Law.”

What’s interesting about this is that there are specific laws that cover door to door sales to prevent individuals being taken advantage of, primarily elderly and lower income individuals who are more vulnerable to these types of appeals. I was involved in a lawsuit concerning credit card sign-ups that would occur after completing banking business. We use this door to door sales rules to modify conduct of these telemarketers. It will be interesting to see if there’ll be any type of legislation that will be designed to protect consumers from what could be very predatory advertising practices.

Amazon is a classic fixed cost business model, it uses the internet to get maximum leverage out of its fixed assets, and once it achieves enough volume of sales, the sum total of profits from all those sales exceed its fixed cost base, and it turns a profit. It already has exceeded this hurdle in its past.


But “flipping a switch” is the wrong analogy because Amazon’s core business model does generate a profit with most every transaction at its current price level. The reason it isn’t showing a profit is because it’s undertaken a massive investment to support an even larger sales base. How does Amazon turn a profit? Not by flipping a switch but by waiting, once again, until its transaction volume grows and income exceeds its fixed cost base again.

Anyway, read the whole thing. It’s interesting.