The Power of Social Media

So there’s this site called Twitter, right? You may have heard of it. Well Bill Gates recommended a book during a thread he posted to the site. Today the book was the top selling title on Amazon. Welp.

I won’t even tell you which book it is. Just go look for yourself. 

Amazon is Still Causing Heartache for Publishers

We’ve all used Amazon. Some of us more than others. I imagine most of us are aware of the site’s option to buy with 1 click, right? I never use it, but I know it’s there. Now Amazon is allowing third party sellers to bid for the buy with 1 click option. Which isn’t new at all. Amazon has allowed this for other products but had excluded books. No longer.

What this means is that a third party could potentially be the first option to buy on the product page rather than the copy of the book Amazon purchased from the publisher.

My problem with this whole thing isn’t with Amazon. It’s with book publishers thinking they’re so much better than every other business. I’ve bought so many different products on Amazon when the first option is a third party seller and there was an option to buy from Amazon too. Publishers publish books to make money. THE END. Let’s not be fooled by their crying over not being the first option on Amazon.

How come publishers aren’t attacking Half Price Books? Their books are being sold by the hundreds of thousands or maybe even millions, and they aren’t seeing a dime from those sales. But Amazon is the bad guy. Like always.

Adios, Tax-Free Books on Amazon

I know Amazon is what’s most dividing the country right now. *wink*

And now they’re becoming even more divisive. Up until now there were a couple of states Amazon was not collecting sales tax in because they didn’t have a physical presence, but no more! Amazon will begin collecting sales tax in every state with statewide sales tax. My reaction is IT’S ABOUT TIME!

Years ago when I first began my relationship with Amazon I paid no sales tax because the company had yet to expand into Texas. But those days ended long ago. As a result I try to buy from third party sellers as often as I can to avoid the sales tax. But honestly, I don’t even spend that much on the site. I’d say between $300-$500 a year. And even with that relatively low amount I still feel like I’m getting my money’s worth.

Are you feeling any kind of way about the sales tax

Amazon is in Some Hot Water

Amazon is in hot water right now. The website has Holocaust denial books listed for sale.

This is difficult for me to defend at all. Some might say free speech. Others might say history. But is it okay to sale a book most likely branding itself as fact, that couldn’t be further from the truth?

I’m not sure where this falls on the list of issues facing the company, but it’s mist definitely an issue. I’d argue Holocaust denial is one of the most dangerous things we encounter as humans. Why? Because it opens the door to repeat history. To repeat a major aspect of the worst armed conflict the world has ever known.

I have a wristband I bought at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum last year when I visited DC. It says “What you do matters.” Take note, Amazon. Because what you do matters.

I’ve worn that wristband everyday since I bought it. To remind myself that my voice and actions are important to ensure that we never go back to our worst days as humans.

Amazon Launches Prime Reading

If you have a Prime account like I do, then you’re likely already aware of the many perks associated with the subscription. And now Amazon adds to it again.

Prime Reading is exactly what you’d expect it to be. You get to read any book that’s included in the service. I believe it’s currently over a thousand titles at launch. You also get free access to current magazines. I haven’t subscribed to a magazine in about a decade, but I’ve really been considering subscribing to Sports Illustrated or National Geographic. And they’re both included!

There is no subscription service that gives you greater value for your money than an Amazon Prime menbership. There’s books, movies, TV shows, two-day shipping, Prime Now, and I bet members will one day get to fly into space before nonmembers. HA!

Does Prime Reading make you want a Prime membership any more than before? Or if you’re already a Prime member, will you take advantage of the new program?

Check Your Amazon Accounts!

You know that little court case that’s been slithering through the system for a few years now? The one that alleged Apple conspired with publishers against Amazon to raise eBook prices. Well Apple (the lone remaining party) has finally exhausted all of its legal challenges and has agreed to pay $400 million to customers who purchased eBooks between 2010 and 2012. If you did then you should have an Amazon credit on your account right now. The amount will depend on the number of NYT bestsellers and other ebooks you purchased.

I’m not sure if it’s a digital credit or a regular one. So check!

I’m glad Apple has finally had to fork over some money. Screw them and the publishers for what they did and getting caught. The publishers have all settled already.