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Posts Tagged ‘New York Times’

Amazon Says Print is Dead, Long Live the Kindle (Not so fast…)

In Entertainment, Media, Technology, Uncategorized on July 21, 2010 at 9:27 am
IMG_0096.JPG

Image by Yoshimasa Niwa via Flickr

So, earlier this week Amazon put out a press release singing the glories of the Kindle.

It has been a tough few weeks for the Kindle as things have looked up for the iPad while they’ve been caught in a bit of an e-reader price war.

So, you really can’t blame Amazon for putting out a release that trumpets their device.

“Kindle Device Unit Accelerate Each Month in Second Quarter; New $189 Price Results in Tipping Point for Growth” says the release’s headline.

Well, geez. Wow. That’s great, huh? They must be selling gazillions of Kindles by now. How many? Well, let’s look at the release again. Hmm. It’s not there.

How about in The New York Times story about Amazon’s announcement?

Wait. It’s not there either though the Times does repeat Amazon’s claim that “the growth rate of Kindle sales tripled after Amazon lowered the price of the device in late June.”

The problem is that unlike Apple — which regularly touts how many iPads it’s selling — Amazon has never released exact sales figures for the device. paidContent.org has quoted Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos saying they may never release those figures.

So, when they say that growth has tripled… from one to three? Seven to 21? One million to three million? Who knows?

Now, let’s look at the rest of the release: “Amazon.com Now Selling More Kindle Books Than Hardcover Books.”

Again, wow. The previously mentioned New York Times story refers to this news “as a day for the history books — if those will even exit in the future.”

And reading the release, you can’t blame them.

Amazon claims that “over the past three months, for every 100 hardcover books Amazon.com has sold, it has sold 143 Kindle books. Over the past month, for every 100 hardcover books Amazon.com has sold, it has sold 180 Kindle books.”

Again, wow.

But…

Since they don’t give us actual sales figures (other than the fact that James Patterson has sold 867,881 Kindle books, one of five writers to sell more than 500,000 KIndle books; the others being: Charlaine Harris, Stieg Larsson, Stephanie Meyer and Nora Roberts), we really don’t know what that means.

Yes, it’s a lot — based on those five writers alone — but how much? And what does it really mean?

Is it that — as Bezos claims — “the Kindle format has now overtaken the hardcover format.”

Is it that e-readers, whether they be Kindles or iPads, are the way things are going?

The second is more likely.

At the same time, as great as the devices are, as I’ve pointed out, e-readers will only really be the future when we figure out how to get them to everyone. Otherwise we need to keep helping libraries and schools make sure they have regular, old, printed books for kids.

Print may not be quite as robust as it used to be but it’s far from dead.

The New York Times, The Washington Post and Irony

In Media, Politics, Technology, Uncategorized on July 20, 2010 at 8:56 am

Where would we be without Mondays?

Today’s life lesson in irony comes from The New York Times and The Washington Post. Actually it’s from Politico but it’s thanks to a New York Times story.

(maybe you should buckle up)

The New York Times had a story yesterday, In a World of Online News, Burnout Starts Younger.

The focus is websites like the hyperactive political website Politico and gossip site Gawker and the conclusion:

“Such is the state of the media business these days: frantic and fatigued. Young journalists who once dreamed of trotting the globe in pursuit of a story are instead shackled to their computers, where they try to eke out a fresh thought or be first to report even the smallest nugget of news — anything that will impress Google algorithms and draw readers their way.”

There’s talk of high turnover rates and frantic obsession with page views and that we live “in a media environment crowded with virtual content farms where no detail is too small to report as long as it was reported there first.”

What isn’t there is a lot of talk of long-term projects and in-depth reporting. Not to say that there isn’t in-depth online reporting, it’s just that the emphasis is fast fast fast. It’s as if suddenly everybody’s a wire service reporter.

Except Dana Priest of The Washington Post.

Bless her and her ability to report the hell out of a story.

In the past five years, Priest has won two Pulitzers — for her exposure of the CIA’s secret prisons and for her series on the lousy treatment Americans veterans were receiving at Walter Reed.

Now she’s back with a hell of a story running in installments in her paper.

Top Secret America is the result of more than two years of reporting, breathtaking in its scope and an amazing example of not only why newspapers are important but how effective they can be when embracing changes in technology.

At its heart, the series explores how “the government has built a national security and intelligence system so big, so complex and so hard to manage, no one really knows if it’s fulfilling its most important purpose: keeping its citizens safe.”

Priest, her colleague William Arkin and nearly a dozen other Post staffers have put together what appears to be an astoundingly well-reported, well-written series. And not only have they written some great articles (part two is live today), they’ve created an interactive website with a searchable database, a Facebook page, a Twitter account. There’s going to be a special on Frontline (won’t be airing until the fall, watch the seven-minute teaser video here).

So, on a day that The New York Times reports on how the world of online journalism is leading to burnout, The Washington Post comes out with a great series that reminds people of why newspapers are important — essential — and shows the potential of in-depth reporting on the web.

Brilliant.

Down Goes Mantel! Down Goes Mantel! Down Goes Mantel! Literary Rivalries Real and Imagined

In Uncategorized on June 19, 2010 at 1:57 am
Cover of "Wolf Hall: A Novel (Man Booker ...

Down Goes Mantel! Orange Upset

Okay. Maybe it lacks the drama of Howard Cosell’s call of George Foreman knocking down Joe Frazier but there was certainly a bit of wow when Barbara Kingsolver’s The Lacuna beat out Hilary Mantel’s Wolf Hall to win this year’s Orange Prize for Fiction.

“The Lacuna was the surprise winner,” reported the LA Times.

“There is a sense of surprise and deflation around Barbara Kingsolver’s win,” commented The Guardian.

Even Kingsolver, herself, said she was “stunned and thrilled.”

There were several factors including that Mantel’s story of life in the Court of Henry VIII in 16th Century England was clearly the hometown favorite and that just two months before, Mantel had bested Kingsolver to win the closest-ever Tournament of Books sponsored by The Morning News.

Here’s the thing… why are we so concerned with which book is better? Which author is better? Now, admittedly sometimes a book that maybe few had heard of  will win a prize opening it up to a whole new audience such as happened with this year’s Pulitzer.

But really. Can’t we judge each book on its own merits? The Tournament of Books is a clever idea but isn’t writing more comparable to golf than basketball? Aren’t you really competing against yourself?

I mean, The New Yorker’s recently released list of 20 writers under 40 to watch is interesting but by giving us the list they’re telling us their special, perhaps more special than others, which is really something that we should be able to figure out by the fact that most of them have received great reviews in places like The New York Times and have written best sellers?

After all, it wasn’t that hard for The Millions to come up with a list of 20 more who are just as worthy.

Time Magazine critic and author Lev Grossman said lists like this are “a unique artifact of late-20th-century popular criticism — as crass and lame as earlier eras of human civilization were, I can’t imagine critics of an earlier era being crass and lame in quite this exact way.”

I think that lists like this and prizes can be useful if they lead to feuds like Norman Mailer-Gore Vidal or Hemingway ad Fitzgerald or Mario Vargas Llosa and Gabriel Garcia Marquez. There have certainly been literary feuds worth following over the years — enough to inspire a book. (I’m being sarcastic).

Show me a list of writers I haven’t heard of that I should read. Give big prizes to writers that deserve more recognition.

Stop trying to make writers into college basketball teams and let them be judged against themselves. Judge the work for what it is not based on what else has come out.

Gooooaaaalll!!!!! The AP's World Cup App Scores for the News Business

In Entertainment, Technology, Uncategorized, World on June 10, 2010 at 10:55 am
2010 FIFA World Cup logo

Image via Wikipedia

Okay… maybe there was an O or A too many in the headline but the Associated Press seems to be on to something with their just released app that’s focused on World Cup coverage.

With the international soccer/football (depending on where you’re reading this) about to get underway, the news collective — or as they put it: “the world’s leading source for news and information” — has put together a pretty impressive though fairly straight forward app allowing fans to follow along.

Available for Apple’s devices as well those from Nokia, Blackberry and, of course, those on the Android platform (notable: the Android version supports Flash; no word on the Superman or The Green Lantern. Sorry.) the App allows you to get your information in English, Spanish, French and Portuguese.

Of course, the AP’s not the only organization with a World Cup App. There’s ESPN, Univision, The Telegraph and more.

And the World Cup App isn’t AP’s only app.

They have a general news one for the iPad (which, strangely, I don’t find to be quite as good as their one for the iPhone) and they have even made their venerable stylebook available as an app. Though at $28.99, it’s $3.99 more expensive than a subscription to the online version of the stylebook and I’m not sure what that’s about.

Anyway, the point is that the AP is definitely on to something with developing targeted apps that may not reach the top of the charts but will (hopefully) attract audiences.

And the AP’s not alone.

The New York Times has done it with apps for crosswords and real estate and has just released an iPad-specific guide to New York called The Scoop.

Entertainment Weekly turned their Must List into an app. Men’s Health developed one for working out. Lucky Magazine has a concierge app.

Even Highlights for Children has turned their Hidden Puzzles feature into an app.

It seems to be part of a growing trend of online consumption.

As I (and many, many others) have pointed out, when the iPad was released there was a lot of talk about whether or not it would save the magazine industry, the publishing industry, the Mets from self-destructing, world peace and so on.

And when there wasn’t immediate signs that all was once again right with the world (like it had ever really been that way), there was a bit of doom and gloom in the press.

“iPad still not proven as magazine industry’s savior as Apple announces two-millionth sale” was the headline on a Yahoo story on June 1.

That’s right. June 1. A whole two months after the device debuts and it has not yet saved the magazine, risen the dead or cured cancer.

It’s kind of like the old joke about the politician who walked on water and, afterward, people complained about how he couldn’t swim.

Think of it this way. Miracles — even small technological changes — don’t always happen overnight. I mean, television was a black and white medium for some 20 years before color programming came around.

A report earlier this week indicated that, in some cases, people are spending more time with the online versions of magazines than they had with the print versions.

Another report said that Wired Magazine may sell more digital copies this month than printed copies.

Change is coming. A bit here, a bit there, a whole lot over there. People are still finding their way, figuring out what works and what doesn’t; whether they can roll with the punches.

And we need to, somehow, be patient, understanding. Look for things that are good and encourage them, point out things that maybe don’t work so well and see if there’s room for improvement.

The AP had a good idea by making World Cup coverage an app.

Let’s see what’s next.

The New York Times and their Misguided War on Pulse

In Entertainment, Technology, Uncategorized on June 9, 2010 at 1:24 pm

You have to feel sorry for the two Stanford grads who developed the Pulse News Reader app, which currently sits at the top of the charts in Apple’s App Store.

And given that it costs $3.99, that’s notable for several reasons but more on that in a bit.

First, The New York Times writes a post about it, calling Pulse a “stylish and easy-to-use news aggregator.”

The paper points out that “news organizations still puzzling over their iPad strategies can perhaps derive some hope from Pulse’s success — or at least its price tag” quoting someone involved with Pulse’s development as saying: “You absolutely do not have to give away something great for free. If you build something great, people will pay you for it.”

Now, take a moment here. Two Stanford grads come up with this great app that makes it easy to scan through content from different sites. Since you pick the sites you’re scanning, there’s no secret about where the news comes from. The app also makes it very easy for you to go to the website to see the full story.

And, as noted, people — many people — are willing to pay.

So, what’s the reaction of the Times to an app that presents their content in an easy to read fashion that sends people to their website?

They send a letter to Apple demanding that they remove the app from their store.

As Wired Magazine points out, it’s almost as if the paper’s cutting off its nose to spite its face:

“The poor old Times has managed to gain 35,000 subscribers in a few weeks, without doing a thing. Those are pretty good numbers, and you’d think that the paper would be happy about this free exposure.

PC World reported the move “created a stir” because, really — as AllThingsD put it: “Pulse is little more than a really well-designed RSS reader.”

Now, if I was the Times (in the interest of disclosure, while I’m not the Times, I have freelanced for them), I would be less worried about Pulse and send my lawyers after some other aggregators that will take the paper’s content and pretty much — if not present it as their own — kind of hide where the news came from.

In fact, there’s one aggregator that I’ve written about (I mentioned his name in this piece but no longer feel he even deserves that bit of respect) who recently said:

“Here at (xxxx; as I said,  I don’t want to direct any traffic to his site), we’re particularly eager for the charge walls to go up. You’ll be able to spend more of your time and effort reading The New York Times, you can come to (xxxx) and for no money at all spend less time and effort getting the news in the Times.”

In other words, he plans to steal the paper’s content, present it as his own and do very little — if anything — to send readers to the paper’s site.

Word of advice to the Times: Leave Pulse alone  — and it’s important to note here that the app is once again available — and go after this guy. He’s the threat.

Loving the One You're With

In Entertainment, Uncategorized on June 8, 2010 at 6:17 pm

Mary and Wallace Stegner

Last month marked the passing of two literary widows — Mary Stegner and Inna Grade — who, from all accounts were not only inspirations for their husbands and protectors of their legacies, they were forces all their own to be contended with, respected. And, certainly in the case of Grade, apparently — feared.

Now, I should make it clear that I had never met either woman or their husbands except through their work and I suspect they also probably didn’t know each other.

So, why write about them together? What do they have to do with each other?

Read the descriptions of them, their relationships with their husbands, Wallace Stegner and Chaim Grade.

The New York Times wrote about Grade’s “zealous guardianship of her husband’s legacy” and how “she repeatedly declared that translations of her husband’s writing failed to do justice to the vitality of his language and the breadth of his cultural insights.”

The LA Times quotes Wallace Stegner telling interviewer James Hepworth:

“She has had no role in my life except to keep me sane, fed, housed, amused, and protected from unwanted telephone calls. Also to restrain me fairly frequently from making a horse’s ass of myself in public, to force me to attend to books and ideas from which she knows I will learn something; also to mend my wounds when I am misused by the world, to implant ideas in my head and stir the soil around them, to keep me from falling into a comfortable torpor, to agitate my sleeping hours with problems that I would not otherwise attend to; also to remind me constantly (not by precept but by example) how fortunate I have been to live for fifty-three years with a woman that bright, alert, charming, and supportive”

and adds:

“We’ll never know what his work might have been like without his wife Mary, but it sounds like he thought there would have been less of it, and it would not have been as good.”

And Grade was apparently no less of a force in her husband’s life though not everyone was enamored, claiming her zealousness about his work prevented it from reaching a wider audience.

Some do see it differently speculating that “Grade was apparently more afraid of poor translations and bad adaptations (which she thought had already diminished her husband’s reputation) than she was of no translations or adaptations at all.”

Here’s the thing. Both were married to their husbands for more than 50 years. Maybe their relationships were perfect, maybe they weren’t but I’d have to say that the evidence is that they worked for those involved.

I know this is corny but sometimes it’s important just to take a moment, recognize not only the love that others have but the love that you have in your life. Things may not be perfect but it’s always nice to know there’s something special to hang on to.

So, I read about Mary Stegner and Inna Grade and the long relationships they had with their husbands and think about how lucky I am for what I have in my life.

Fear Not, Garrison! iPad, Kindle and Company Seem to be Helping

In Entertainment, Technology, Uncategorized on May 29, 2010 at 9:41 am
Mr. Garrison Keillor

Image via Wikipedia

Garrison Keillor, whose words and voice have given me comfort in the years in his books, radio show and  his daily poem, is very worried.

In a piece for The New York Times, Keillor writes that he is worried “that book publishing is about to slide into the sea.”

He fears that e-books and self publishing will close the door on an era when “e became writers through the laying on of hands. Some teacher who we worshipped touched our shoulder, and this benediction saw us through a hundred defeats. And then an an editor smiled on us and wrote a check and our babies got shoes.”

He describes a future with “18 million authors in America, each with an average of 14 readers, eight of whom are blood relatives. Average annual earnings: $1.75.”

First off. As far as I can tell, the only real difference in Keillor’s future is that the average author will have six readers who are not blood relatives.

Really.

How many people do you know who have been slaving away, tinkering on, working at what they think could be the Great American Novel? Everybody’s a writer or thinks they are. People have been writing bad short stories, poems, sketches for hundreds of years.

And most of them haven’t made a dime.

Mr. Keillor — there’s really nothing new about that.

What’s great about self-publishing operations like Amazon’s BookSurge and Pubit from Barnes and Noble, is that it makes it easier for people to get out there and take a chance. Maybe they make nothing, maybe they made Keillor’s mythical average of $1.75.”

The important thing is that people are giving it a go.

Don’t we want a world where more people are trying to communicate? I mean, does he really he think that everyone who self-publishes thinks that they’ve really written the Great American Poem, Novel, Short Story? I’m sure some do. But I’m betting the majority are just people who feel they have something to say.

And let them say it, write it, shout it, blog it, self-publish and podcast it.

Let people dream and share those dreams.

The great writing will still find its way through.

In the meantime, grab a pen, pencil, typewriter, iPad, Kindle, whatever and write! And share what you’ve written.

There’s an audience of billions looking for something to read — the American Association of Publishers on Friday announced that book sales in March were up 16.6 percent, that they’re up eight percent for the year. Audiobook sales overall are up 14.7 percent for the year and the sales of downloaded audiobooks are up 29.3 percent.

AND e-book sales are up 251.9 percent for the year.

251.9 percent!

I would say that iPads and Kindles and Nooks and so forth are helping more people become readers and writers.

I mean, really. Does it get better? A nation where people are reading and writing? Maybe it’s not all good writing. Big deal. At least people are communicating!

Please relax, Mr. Keillor. It’s all going to be okay.

Apple, Amazon and the Department of Justice

In Uncategorized on May 26, 2010 at 3:02 pm
Image representing iTunes as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

The report from The New York Times that the Department of Justice is “examining Apple’s tactics in the market for digital music” is really about so much more than music.

While the probe seems to stem from “recent allegations that Apple used its dominant position to persuade music labels to refuse to give the online retailer Amazon.com exclusive access to music about to be released” and states that so far it’s been “broadly about the dynamics of selling music online,” it’s important to add a little context to the situation.

What’s come before and what could it mean in the future?

First, it’s important to keep in mind that even if Apple did what they’re being accused of, it’s not like this was the first shot in the war between the retailers.

As Apple got ready to unveil the iPad with its own way of selling books, the company was negotiating with publishers to allow them to sell books at different prices than Amazon was charging, which led to Amazon briefly refusing to sell books published by Macmillan.

That resulted in headlines like:

“Apple vs. Amazon: The Great E-book War has Already Begun” in Mashable;

and

Business Insider’s “The Apple-Amazon eBook War Begins”

and

“Amazon eBook Pricing Battle Gets Ugly” at The Millions.

And while Amazon eventually capitulated and started re-listing Macmillan’s titles, when they did so, they released a statement foreshadowing these new events.

“We want you to know that ultimately, however, we will have to capitulate and accept Macmillan’s terms because Macmillan has a monopoly over their own titles, and we will want to offer them to you even at prices we believe are needlessly high for ebooks,” read Amazon’s statement.

As The Guardian pointed out:

“Some publishers sensed Amazon gearing up for a legal fight with its use of the word “monopoly” in its response.

“I think they very specifically used that word,” said one source, “as a way of pointing out to regulators: ‘We wanted to sell ebooks for under $10 but there is a pact between publishers and Apple which has forced the price of ebooks.”

Which brings us to today and a look toward tomorrow.

There’s a lot of fighting going on… Apple vs. Android, Apple vs. Amazon — and yes, a lot of it involves Apple — but the fact is that companies are figuring out what they’re really good at and working on improving their market share.

At the same time that doesn’t mean competition isn’t still underway.

Amazon’s the dominant bookseller and the Kindle certainly has helped them. That hasn’t kept Apple from the iPad, Barnes and Noble from the Nook, Borders from the Kobo and so forth.

And Apple definitely leads the way in the music world with iTunes but that hasn’t stopped people — including Amazon — from competing.

Just last week was Google’s announcement they are working on bringing music to the Android marketplace in way that’s sure to make some Apple device owners drool.

So, what’s it all mean?

I suspect that as competition keeps heating up so will the complaints. In the end, though, I’m betting it’s unlikely the Justice Department gets too involved. Because once they do, where do they draw the line?

Mark This: 100 Years Since Twain's Death

In Entertainment, Uncategorized on May 25, 2010 at 2:12 pm
Mark Twain photo portrait.

Image via Wikipedia

Better late than never.

When Mark Twain died in 1910, he left instructions that his autobiography not be published until 100 years after his death and, as the Independent reports, that milestone has been reached.

“In November the University of California, Berkeley, where the manuscript is in a vault, will release the first volume of Mark Twain’s autobiography,” according to the paper. “The eventual trilogy will run to half a million words, and shed new light on the quintessentially American novelist.”

There have been versions of it released over the years but this promises to be different.

“Robert Hirst, who is leading the team at Berkeley editing the complete text, says that more than half of it has still never appeared in print,” the Independent reported. “Only academics, biographers, and members of the public prepared to travel to the university’s Bancroft research library have previously been able to read it in full.

“‘When people ask me ‘did Mark Twain really mean it to take 100 years for this to come out’, I say ‘he was certainly a man who knew how to make people want to buy a book’,” Dr Hirst said.

Hirst works at Berkeley’s Bancroft Library, home to The Mark Twain Papers & Project, my favorite part of which is an online repository of thousands of his his letters and other papers.

It’s really almost impossible to overstate Twain’s place in American history — if not on the world stage.

He was “the most famous American writer of all time” and “remains the title-holder this morning,” Tom Wolfe wrote last month in The New York Times. “Later American literary stars like Hemingway, Faulkner, Sinclair Lewis and John Steinbeck, Nobel Prize-winners one and all, never had more than a spoonful of the great gouts of fame that Twain…enjoyed everywhere in the world.”

His Huckleberry Finn — a mainstay of high schools — is also a mainstay of banned book lists.

When he died, The New York Times wrote he “was the greatest American humorist of his age. It is certain that his contemporary fame abroad was equal to his fame at home. All Europe recognized his genius, the English people appreciated him at his own worth.

“From The Jumping Frog to the Diary of Adam everything that came from his pen was eagerly read and heartily enjoyed by multitudes.”

In that piece, the Times also pointed out that “posterity will be left to decide his relative position.”

While one really need only look at the excitement — good and bad — that Twain still engenders to see how that question has been answered, you can also look toward the Kennedy Center in Washington DC.

Each year they give out The Mark Twain Prize for American Humor, which this year is going to Tina Fey, former star of Saturday Night Live and current creator and star of 30 Rock. While Googling will give you one of the reasons why I think this is great news, the fact is that, like Twain, Fey is a brilliant satirist unwilling to be boxed in by conventional wisdom.

It’s been 175 years since Twain was born and 100 years since he died.

The prize named for him going to Fey, the long-awaited publication of his autobiography… Twain’s still a big star casting a big shadow.

Auletta, Amazon and the Death of Publishing

In Entertainment, Technology, Uncategorized on April 22, 2010 at 10:19 am
Image representing Amazon Kindle as depicted i...

Image via CrunchBase

Back in the early 1990s when I worked for The New York Post, there was a sense that The New York Times daily coverage of the city wasn’t all that it could be and what they did — which drove competitors crazy — was they might ignore a story for a couple of days and the come out with these long, comprehensive pieces that included everything, including the kitchen sink.

And that’s kind of how I feel about Ken Auletta’s new piece in The New Yorker that asks the question, “Can the IPad topple the Kindle and save the book business?”

If you haven’t read it, it is worth the time because even if he doesn’t have a lot that’s new, he pretty much has everything that others (including me) have written.

Reading it, though, I realized that I think it might have been a more interesting read if Auletta had taken the opposite track — asking not whether Apple can save publishing but exploring whether Amazon can kill publishers.

Auletta quotes a “close associate” of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos as saying,”What Amazon really wanted to do was make the price of e-books so low that people would no longer buy hardcover books. Then the next shoe to drop would be to cut publishers out and go right to authors.”

It’s not a new concern.

Last December when Stephen Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People announced he was shifting his digital rights to Amazon from his traditional publisher, Simon and Schuster, for a year, the New York Times led off by saying:

“Ever since electronic books emerged as a major growth market, New York’s largest publishing houses have worried that big-name authors might sign deals directly with e-book retailers or other new ventures, bypassing traditional publishers entirely.”

Then, in January, Amazon announced a plan allowing authors who give their exclusive e-book rights to Amazon to earn 70 percent royalty.

That was followed five days later by Ian McKewan shifting the e-rights to five of his books to Amazon, doubling his usual royalty as became the first big-name British author to sign on.

And, of course, there’s Stephen King, the kind of author who perhaps symbolizes the greatest threat to traditional publishers.

When the second version of the Kindle was announced, King read from a novella he wrote specifically to be distributed through the device.

It was such a success that a couple of weeks ago, he released a second story, created just for the Kindle.

And it’s not just the big names like King and Covey.

Galleycat, the publishing blog, recently interviewed mystery writer JA Kornath, who is making quite a nice living selling for the Kindle.

So, will Amazon prove to be the death of publishing? Will the IPad save it?

Probably no and no, though they are already clearly having an effect.

And, as I’ve pointed out before, until we figure out how to make sure there are enough devices for every student in every school to be able to get one, we need to make sure there are printed books out there for people to read.