Kindle Link Love + Mr. Bezos apologizes for 1984

Here are the most interesting things happening in the Kindlesphere –

  1. Mr. Bezos posted an apology on behalf of Amazon at the Kindle Forum –

    Jeffrey P. Bezos says:
    This is an apology for the way we previously handled illegally sold copies of 1984 and other novels on Kindle. Our “solution” to the problem was stupid, thoughtless, and painfully out of line with our principles. It is wholly self-inflicted, and we deserve the criticism we’ve received. We will use the scar tissue from this painful mistake to help make better decisions going forward, ones that match our mission.

    With deep apology to our customers,

    Jeff Bezos
    Founder & CEO

  2. Ran into this epic list of free romance novels (be warned that it’s neverending) at the Romance Studio.
  3. Credit Suisse thinks the installed base of ereaders could soar to 32 million in 2014. They expect installed base of Kindle owners to grow to 20 million by 2014.
  4. Financial Times editor Lionel Barber thinks that most news websites will charge within a year.
  5. An excellent post on the Kindle and ebooks from Charles Pillsbury. One of the many gems –

    One problem with a musical analogy is that most musical artists don’t make the bulk of their money from the production and sale of records, but from their live performances. As with Radio, a musician can almost give away their “product” and it not hurt their bottom line.

On the financial front –  

  1. I have a college friend and an ex-roommate at Harvard at the moment (business school and physics phd program respectively) and have a lot of admiration for Jack Meyer. So this article on Harvard’s precarious position caught my attention.
  2. A related article on Jack Meyer leaving Harvard (due to the debate over his pay) is also worth a read.

It makes me wonder why there’s such a difference in my mind between –

  1. What Jack Meyer did at Harvard (admirable). 
  2. What John Arnaud did with his energy bets (impressive, however not my cup of tea). 
  3. Goldman Sachs and their recent ‘profits’ (would need some rather colorful language 😉 ) .  

What’s the line between ‘investing well’ and ‘greed and manipulation’?

At what point do we say the rewards of financial investing have become out of sync with the value added?

Interesting Kindle Articles

Here are some really interesting Kindle related articles –

  1. Adam L. Penenberg at Fast Company talks about Amazon, Apple, Kindle, and the competition therein
  2. A fantastic article on why its the perfect time to start a newspaper –

    *The competition is broken
    *A start up would be free of the legacy costs weighing down current papers
    *Talent, including writers, could be lured away from their current failing employer.
    Do read the article for more …

    Personally, think it’s also a good time to become a publisher. You compete against old, slow giant publishers that have to support their outdated methods of working.   

  3. Thomas E. Weber of thinks the real genius of the Kindle is that it lets you uni-task. Have been reading, and finishing, more books than in the last 10 years so can’t argue with that.
  4. Zoe Winters talks about her self-published book, her Amazon sales rank, and more.
  5. ZDNet reports on Jim Friedland’s belief that Kindle penetration could reach 10% of Amazon’s US customer base by 2013 (some really good charts) –

    We estimate that Amazon has sold almost 800,000 Kindle units to date. We believe that Kindle sales are ramping up this year due to: (1) the elimination of major supply constraints that limited unit sales for the first 15 months after launch; (2) a large increase in content available on the Kindle Store; and (3) the Kindle2 and Kindle DX product launches. We estimate that Amazon sold 340,000 units in 2008, increasing to 900,000 in 2009 and 1.4 million in 2010. We believe that Kindle penetration could reach 10% of Amazon’s U.S. customer base by 2013, or 2% of the U.S. population

    Elimination of Major Supply Constraints? Not exactly, Mr. Friedland. The Kindle DX is out of stock for 3-5 weeks.

The first 4 articles are good enough to merit a complete post just discussing them. The Amazon Vs Apple comparison in particular is fascinating and after looking at how the Kindle’s Content Revenues are better than the iPod’s, soon will look at the sales figures and comparisons between Kindle Sales and iPod Sales.

Kindle Link Love – end June

Again, some really interesting posts and updates on the kindle that you will probably like –

  1. First, an excellent discussion at platypope on why worse is better in ebook formats.  
  2. A free book from Robert W. Walker (pdf format), found via Kindle Nation. And the book in Kindle format (If Mr. Walker wants me to remove the kindle format file, will gladly do so).
  3. The Kindle Store now has PC Magazine available.
  4. Joe Wikert has some good thoughts on the Kindle, including something that’s coming up more and more i.e.

    How much of the Kindle’s success is due to the instant delivery, cheaper prices, and the service; as opposed to the device itself and the eInk technology.

  5. At The Atlantic, a really interesting comments discussion on ‘If the Kindle had been invented first’.
  6. Teleread points to this Sony Reader Customizer that let you get features like custom fonts, localized languages, one key shut-down and much more (makes me wish even more for a Kindle App Store).

Thought for the Day: Mr. Bezos mentioned that ‘the Kindle Store is DRM agnostic’.

Its interesting that DRM polarizes people to the extent that it does. Given that a lot of content creators are very pro-DRM, and a lot of content consumers are anti-DRM, Amazon might not have an option other than to keep the Kindle Store DRM Agnostic (Recently, have been referring to Wikipedia nearly as much as Chris Anderson).