Category Archives: DeBunking

There’s a Problem With Calling the Fire Phone a Failure Based on Sales of 35,000 units

fire phoneThere’s a certain story going around over the past few days which I have been ignoring but has been getting a lot of attention in the blogosphere.

A journalist with the The Guardian picked up his abacus over the weekend and estimated that the $650 Fire Phone from Amazon only sold 35,000 units. This has lead to some interesting reporting, including stories framed as: Continue reading

Will Amazon Turn Twitch Into A Failure like GoodReads? One Can Only Hope

MTIzNjEzMTg5NDE2MjU3MDM4(1)As you probably know, news broke yesterday that Amazon acquired the gaming-focused social network Twitch for nearly a billion  dollars. Normally this story wouldn’t come up on a blog focused on digital reading, but I have been reading some of the commentary on the acquisition and I wanted to have a say.

Earlier today I read a post on ReadWrite which asked whether Twitch would end up being a failure like Goodreads:
Continue reading

Did Amazon Cage The Goldfinch Publisher? Here’s What the WSJ Didn’t Tell You

8291680651_ac17e28e41_m[1]Jeffrey Trachtenberg of the Wall Street Journal weighed in on the Amazon Hachette dispute yesterday, and he has a rather unusual take on the situation.

As he sees it, Hachette Book Group’s revenues were up in the first 6 months of the year so Hachette must not have been seriously harmed by the ongoing contract renegotiation with Amazon: Continue reading

Lee Child on Amazon: a Fisking

lee childOf the 909 authors who signed that full page advert slash open letter against Amazon, Lee Child is one of the most respected, admired, and articulate. So when I learned (via The Passive Voice) that he had given an interview on BBC Newsnight and explained why he had signed that letter, I was eager to find out why.

And now I wish I hadn’t. Continue reading

Leaked Photos Show iPhone 6, Retail Box – I Call Fake

Apple-logo[1]Apple’s eagerly anticipated iPhone 6 isn’t going to launch for another month, but one UK tech blog would have you believe that they got their hands on the new smartphone – and in a retail box no less.

Earlier today TechRadar posted an exclusive set of photos which appear to show the iPhone 6.  According to their source, this is supposed to be a beta unit. Continue reading

Think Amazon is Your Friend? You Might Have Amazon Infatuation Syndrome

6391972911_e3b3a4f8ab_z[1]Last night Amazon posted their third official statement in the ongoing contract dispute with Hachette, and like their first statement the open letter posted last night is proving to be an effective tactical PR maneuver.

The letter, which you can read over here, said that Amazon only wanted a 30% commission from sales of Hachette ebooks, and that Amazon was fighting with Hachette over whether the ebooks would be expensive or cheap. The statement goes on to lay out the math to justify lower ebook prices, and then it concludes with the idea that authors should get 35% of the sale price of an ebook. Continue reading

I Don’t Expect to See an iWatch or a 12.9″ iPad Maxi This Year

12_9_ipad_ipad_4_mini_light-800x450[1]A new round of rumors are circulating today concerning Apple’s long-rumored iWatch and 12.9″ iPad. While I usually don’t comment on implausible and unsubstantiated hardware rumors, I’m going to break with my rule against reporting on rumors and point out just how implausible the latest rumors really are. Continue reading

Mike Shatzkin is Wrong About Amazon’s 100% Revenue Offer to Hachette Authors

4243188382_e5176cb75c_b[1]Earlier this week Amazon stunned the publishing world when they sent a letter to agents and authors affected by the contract dispute with Hachette. That letter, which was soon leaked to the press, included details which suggested Hachette was not negotiating in good faith, and it offered to remove authors from the conflict by giving them 100% of their respective Kindle ebook sales. Continue reading

Are Writers Really Earning less than They did 9 Years Ago?

320300354_a8e1ce5eef_b[1]A new survey report was released in the UK this week which appears to show that writers are eaning an average of 29% less in 2013 than they did in 2005. The report comes from the ALCS, an authors’ rights group in the UK, and includes details like: Continue reading

WSJ: Amazon Exec Defends Its Stance Against Hachette – Except He Doesn’t, Really

9409921931_1e3c8e6c7d_b[1] The Wall Street Journal scored a scoop last night in the ongoing Amazon-Hachette contract dispute – or so they would have you believe.

In what the WSJ describes as an Amazon exec defending its actions against Amazon, Kindle VP Russ Grandinetti largely reiterated the statement Amazon had already released over a month ago: Continue reading