Morning Coffee – 6 January 2020
Here are a few stories to read this first Monday in 2020.
- Despised by grammar nazis who were never able to stop it from being commonly used, the singular "they" has been voted the word of the decade.
- Goodreads has a troll problem, and they don’t seem to be able to fix it.
- Art from 1924 entered the public domain in the US this month. Here’s a selection of what critics thought was the worst at the time.
- Is screen time actually a threat, or is that fear just the latest obsession?
- Copyright maximalists in the EU have a new focus for their ire: Canada, and its "overly broad" fair use exceptions.
- The 100 biggest ed-tech disasters of the past decade.
- Bill Rosenblatt thinks subscription ebook services will take come into their own in the next decade. (I don’t see that happening.)
I am thinking of adding my own posts in a second section of links in this post. (I have found there are a lot of people reading this post but not even glancing at the titles of my work.) Good idea or bad idea?
anon January 6, 2020 um 11:37 am
I don’t think a second section is necessary. I always scan the other post titles, but seldom click on ones that have to do with devices. Just my two cents.
Richard Hershberger January 6, 2020 um 12:15 pm
I too have my doubts about ebook subscription services really taking off. We have been paper book subscription services all along in the form of public libraries, with the subscription being free. They are an important slice of the book market, but just a slice. Now charge ten bucks a month and the dynamic changes.
The typical comparison is with music and TV/movie streaming services. Those, I think, have an entirely different dynamic. They are more background. Want music while you do whatever? Load up the streaming service. Want to watch something in the evening? Netflix or Amazon Prime or whatever are there for you. But want to watch something specific? Honestly, Netflix and Amazon Prime, etc., kind of suck for that. You might get lucky. Often you won’t.
It is significant that the Kindle Unlimited audience is the book readers most like music and TV/movie streaming audiences: This is their primary, or at least a major, leisure activity, reading huge amounts of usually commercial genre fiction. This is an important slice of the book market, but still only a fraction. A few years back I ran the best numbers I could find and came out to this being about ten percent of the market (by dollars–considerably higher by units). This is far from nothing, but we shouldn’t imagine it dominates the overall market.
My personal reading habits are such that KU doesn’t tempt me. Would it tempt me if it had every book in print from a major publisher? I’m not sure. Ten dollars a month wouldn’t be a major obstacle to me, but if it kept KU’s ten book limit on downloads at a time, that would kill a lot of the value to me. That isn’t how I read books. I recently finished a history of Christianity that was a doorstop of a book. It took me over a year, but that was interspersed with a lot of other reading. I also read books that are in public domain and free, or nearly so. I have been reading, for example, the short stories of O. Henry. It would make no sense to get something like that through the subscription service, and every minute spent reading that is time that the subscription service is not justifying the expense to me. I don’t know how this would play out. And that is with an improbably comprehensive catalog.
Avery K Tingle January 6, 2020 um 1:36 pm
Personally I think it’s a good idea, especially for people like me who are relatively new to this page and your posts. I look for this every morning when I start the day, so the second section would be a great add.
LuisMtz January 6, 2020 um 4:27 pm
My opinion goes in other direction I guess.. I’d suggest to have individual posts for every Morning coffee entry… I explain my reason: I read your RSS entries through Feedly and most of the times I find valuable/interesting entries inside a Morning Coffee listing so I save the "Morning Coffee 6January2020" as a whole, and that way the title itself does not reflect the 1 or 2 or N subjects -inside- that really captivated me… I know, that would mean maybe more work to you, but would give you more insight about the specific topics attracting your readers…
About the second section, again, because I am reading you through Feedly, I scroll and read all your post titles -by sure-, and I "join" only those I find interesting. So I think I do not miss a post by ignorance.
Do you notice how the logic/method is directly related to the way your audience "read" and "save" you? I think if I would read you through an email newsletter or web browsing then your current model would be fine, but not so much via an RSS reader. Anyway, only my 2 cents.
Thanks for asking, for reading this and for the daiky great work of The Digital Reader. And not less important, happy 2020 !!
David Nemeth January 7, 2020 um 7:55 am
Add your stuff to these links. I see no reason to separate them. Remember we are all lazy sods.