TidBITS Opinion: No, David Pogue, Ebook Piracy is Not a Given

TidBITS Opinion: No, David Pogue, Ebook Piracy is Not a Given

This is a follow-up to my muddled explanatory powers of the earlier post about ”Rip it, Burn it or Buy it!”. Adam explains better than I’ve seen before the likely mechanisms of digital delivery of electronic goods, and how it helps many businesses. He gives us many of the techniques he uses to sell (to date) more than 400.000 copies of DRM free mac books with almost no illicit sharing.

…”Why are his books being shared illicitly whereas ours are not? Certainly, some of it has to do with us providing an easy, inexpensive way for interested readers to purchase the electronic versions they want, and all the little things we do to discourage rampant copying undoubtedly help as well”

Thanks Adam – a great read!

2 thoughts on “TidBITS Opinion: No, David Pogue, Ebook Piracy is Not a Given

  1. david pogue

    Actually, Adam says that he’s sold 150,000 copies of his books, all titles, all years–not 400,000.

    And that is the issue!

    The #1 reason that Adam hasn’t seen much piracy of his books online is probably the obscurity of his series. Besides, Adam can only stand to win by having his stuff distributed online–it’s free advertising. Same reason why unknown bands love free distribution of their MP3 files.

    Big bands, like big book series, already have an established name, and therefore piracy is much worse. That’s the case with the Missing Manual series. When someone downloads one of my widely pirated books, that’s a lost sale to me.

    –Pogue

  2. dkmj

    David,

    I agree with your point, as does Adam, and he recognizes that big-name-authors likely are more hit by piracy. But you do not answer to ANY of the other methods/techniques that TidBits is employing to make the potential customers ‘care’. Give them easy legal alternative. Clearly state price. Give super good and personal customer service. Provide free updates. And more. It seems every publishing org that gets to big stops seeing the need for customer service, and thus, loyalty from the readers perspective is eroded. It doesn’t need to be like that. It doesn’t need to be like that.

    Also – did you read/listen to the SoundOpinions rant? They openly recommend ”burn it” as the bridge to later content worth paying for. I totally know myself and friends are not statistically representative, but I know almost no-one anymore that buys without sampling anymore. Unless there is a sample… there is no sale. And there is no shortage of good quality material to sample out there. This stuff is what we end up buying later, multiple copies to give away if we really like it. And we trash after sampling if we don’t like.

    Also – please read the ”1000 true fans” from Kevin Kelly – commented upon in my blog. They are relevant in this discussion. I think almost every artist from now on is bound to work that logic – BIG name or small. 1000 could be 10.000 and sum extract per fan will vary. But it will be only the True fans that provide funding. Free sampling simply IS the marketing cost of accumulation true fans. Unless you provide free samples – you’ll be out of True fans, and then out of customers altogether.

    My 2 cents at this point in time! Thanks for engaging! Love your stuff!

    /peter

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