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Not sure how I feel about our ludicrous one-sided extradition treaty with the USA now being a pop culture reference. Mind you if it is all down to aliens, that would at least be some sort of explanation for the damn thing.

On the other hand : Yay!  Rhossili beach!   I was going to post a photo of the hounds running there, but philmophlegm beat me to it with a photo with Gwen and Rhys's house in the background. 

This means that philmophlegm, despite his air of elaborate scorn for all things canine -  has posted, unprompted, a photo of a doggy. Bwahahahahahaha!

... and another thing, the Kindle version of A Dance with Dragons is 20p more expensive than the print copy.  Surely paper is more expensive than bandwidth? Or is it purely lack of competition?


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
15th Jul, 2011 10:59 (UTC)
Book pricing has very little to do with manufacturing costs. I'm told that the cost of manufacturing a novel in hardback form is only tens of pence more than manufacturing it in paperback form. The type of people who read ebooks may very well be prepared to pay a premium for convenience.

(Oh, and I feel the need to post this with a cat userpic to offset the dogness of that post.)

Edited at 2011-07-15 11:12 (UTC)
15th Jul, 2011 11:31 (UTC)
I know, but tens of pence is what I'm talking about here!

I'd see the idea behind making the Kindle edition the same price as the hardback (valuebased pricing) but why 20p more? It seems odd! What's the 20p for?
15th Jul, 2011 11:41 (UTC)
Because you get to have it in a more convenient format rather than having to lug around a brick. To many people, the kindle format will be better than the brick format, so on that basis they would presumably be willing to pay more for it.
15th Jul, 2011 11:08 (UTC)
There's a lot of discussion of ebook pricing (authors get paid less, readers have to pay more) on various ebook groups. The publishers claim that the unseen costs to do with infrastructure maintenance and managing Digital Rights risks are higher, the authors and readers claim that's bollocks. The problem is that, broadly speaking, both sides would say that. I've not dug into it in any detail. My gut feeling is that the publishers realise they are going through a period of massive upheaval, have no idea what's going to happen next, and relatively little idea what the actual unit cost of an ebook is going to prove to be long term, and are trying to build a buffer by exploiting the opportunity to create e-rights contracts from scratch to maximise profit in the interim.

As I read very little that isn't freely available on my ereader, it's not an issue I'm much invested in. But it's quite interesting to watch the conversation.
15th Jul, 2011 11:29 (UTC)
That's interesting. I've not done much digging yet either, due to the whole 'damnit why are none of the books I want available on this thing' problem.

My perception was that as a reader, ebooks seemed to be mostly cheaper (eg, I was tempted into buying a couple of Sutcliffs recently because they were only 99p, plus all the out-of-copyright free classics. ) Or are you including cost of hardware into 'readers pay more'?

This is the first time I've been tempted by a best-seller, and I was assuming that the justification for a pricetag of £11.99 would be based on the value of the product to the reader rather than production/management costs.
15th Jul, 2011 11:41 (UTC)
I've been happily working through "out of copyright" so I speak with no authority here, but I think "bestsellers" are often a smidgen more expensive on ereaders, I guess back-catalog may well be discounted (though how that factors into the "but ebooks are actually more expensive for us to produce" argument I couldn't say).

Back-catalog, interestingly, may be cheaper because many publishers seem to be assuming they have the electronic rights to author back-catalogs without paying any royalties to the authors. This caused quite a furore in the romance publishing industry a few months back (and possibly elsewhere). It's apparently remarkably difficult to get Amazon to take down a kindle book a publisher has put on there, even if you, the author, say you have given the publisher no e-rights whatsoever.

The whole area seems to be hugely dynamic at the moment with agents trying to turn themselves into epublishers, authors trying to bypass agents or publishers (as in Rowling's case) or both, publishers arbitrarily changing their standard contract terms on an almost monthly basis, and ever shifting goal-posts over what can be considered a "successful" book. I've not followed in more detail than a kind of "sit back and eat popcorn" so I wouldn't want to say anything certain beyond that they are all clearly in a panic, and everyone is arguing their personal corner very vigorously.
15th Jul, 2011 17:14 (UTC)
15th Jul, 2011 18:13 (UTC)
Good point, but 20p isn't 20% of £11.79?
15th Jul, 2011 18:29 (UTC)
Ah. VAT is the only good reason for an ebook to be cheaper than a paper book. So £11.79 + VAT less a bit gives whatever they feel then can get away with.
15th Jul, 2011 19:21 (UTC)
Sorry, I don't understand what you mean? The Ebook, in this case (though not in the case of many other ebooks I have seen), is more expensive. Print is £11.79, ebook is £11.99.

Printed books are not VATable, ebooks are, so I don't see why VAT would be a 'good reason for an ebook to be cheaper': surely it would be a reason for ebooks to be more expensive?

But I don't understand why it would be the 'only good reason' influencing pricing either - surely lots of things must be different between ebooks and printed books: cost of production, DRM management, storage, backups, stock control, shipping, all of which might be 'good reasons' for price differences?

From a marketing perspective, I think the decisionmaking process is probably different too : Kindle offers immediate, lightweight gratification, print offers a tangible, personisable item that some buyers may value more highly. So I'm wondering what factors have dictated this pricing model.
15th Jul, 2011 23:54 (UTC)
I was not excited about Torchwood this year, after they killed off my favorite character (yes, I realize that doesn't exactly narrow it down), but I'll admit to being excited now. Even though they kinda made all the Americans look like turds. I wonder how that could have come about. Hm.

Actually, I had no idea about a one-sided extradition treaty, but now I'll have to look into it.

We had not planned on going to Wales next summer, but now we might just have to because I want my picture in front of that house and I want to see the lovely beach. (adds more to list)

Also, as an aside, I'd like to apologize for my country. No real reason, it just seems necessary now and then :)
16th Jul, 2011 16:34 (UTC)
Oh, I quite liked the CIA bloke, Rex. He was so splendidly miffed! (though, surely you have toll bridges in the USA? I'm glad you commented, now I have someone to ask about that...)

I wasn't sure what to expect from this season, after Children of Earth, it seemed like it would be hard to come back, but I'm definitely looking forward to the next episode.

If you are coming to Cornwall and London, South Wales isn't a huge diversion - that beach is on the Gower near Swansea, which is where I grew up till I was 12. It does rain more than Cornwall, but my goodness it's a beautiful place. Less touristy than Cornwall, but I dont' really know why - we've been on holiday there!

LOL, I think the ludicrous extradition treaty is 100% down to the craven and glamour-blinded nature of our idiot politicians. I mean, what sort of a government, presented with the idea 'we want you to just send us any of your citizens that we think might be a problem' says 'Yes, where do I sign?'

I can't help feeling that the US guys must have been looking at each other going 'did he really say that???' at that point in the negotiations.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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