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Posts tagged Amazon

GamerGate Zoe Quinn rape story self-published, pulled from Amazon
December 19, 2014 | 11:46 pm

ethicsgameI can’t say I ever expected to have an excuse to write about GamerGate here on TeleRead. The movement generally hasn’t had anything to do directly with e-books. Until now. TechCrunch carries the story of a 3,000 word e-book posted for sale on Amazon, in which five men rape a “controversial video game designer” named “Zada Quinby”—a very thinly-veiled Zoe Quinn, the game developer who has been the focus of many of GamerGate’s attacks. Lest there be any doubt, the book had “#GamerGape” (sic) in its title. The e-book has since been taken down, but the...

Morning Links: Amazon launches Prime Now. Book culture heroes of 2014
December 19, 2014 | 9:00 am

prime nowFive Book Culture Heroes of 2014 (Book Riot) I say this every year, but folks: it’s never been a better time to be a reader. This year, in particular, we’ve been blessed by some incredible people who are making book culture better and more inclusive. So here’s to the book culture heroes of 2014: thanks for your great work. We salute you. *** EU-Canada Trade Agreement May be Incompatible with EU Law (Techdirt) By seeking to move "behind the borders", tackling "non-tariff barriers" that are actually regulations protecting health, safety, the environment, etc., these agreements may interfere with too many core functions of how...

Rick Chapman lays into Amazon advocates, KDP pricing strategy
December 18, 2014 | 10:25 am

AmazonIndie science fiction author and business book writer Rick Chapman has unleashed a long diatribe against Amazon's pricing model for Kindle Direct Publishing, which does make some valid points - although they're buried among a screed against Amazon's defenders (who he charmingly refers to as the Aggregated Amazon Ankle Grabbers, or AAAGs), and also somewhat obscured when he lets the invective get in the way of clear presentation of his argument. Which basically, stripped of all the name-calling and rhetoric, is this: Kindle Direct Publishing's  pricing policy of taking 65 percent of authors' and small publishers' revenues when they price their...

Appeals court judges ask probing questions in Apple e-book anti-trial case
December 16, 2014 | 7:56 pm

Yesterday, the appeals court heard testimony from Apple and the Department of Justice relating to the e-book anti-trust trial appeal. To my surprise, two of the three judges seemed amenable toward Apple’s point of view. They expressed concern over why the publisher collusion was such a bad thing when it was for the sake of stopping monopolist Amazon, and hinted that Judge Cote might have erred when she ruled that Apple’s behavior constituted a pro se anti-trust violation—a violation so obvious that it doesn’t need the “rule of reason” test applied to it. Apple attorney Theodore Boutros asked for...

Kindle X-Ray finally makes it to Kindle Android client – but is it worth it?
December 12, 2014 | 4:00 pm

Android apps have been going through a slew of upgrades and retoolings since the debut of Android 5.0 Lollipop, and now it's the turn of the Amazon Kindle app, which has just updated to version 4.8.0. As per the Google Play Store blur, this brings, for the first time, Amazon's Kindle X-Ray functionality "for Books and Textbooks to look up places, characters and terms," as well as "push notifications from Kindle," "improved library search," "flashcard sets to review textbook material," and the usual "experience improvements and bug fixes."...

Apple iPod DRM case heats up, but might still fizzle
December 7, 2014 | 12:37 pm

The wheels of justice grind slowly, and sometimes a bit of grit gets stuck in the gears. This seems to be the case with the ten-year-old lawsuit against Apple over the DRM policies it used to enforce on iTunes Music Store music and iPods. Over the last couple of weeks, it’s started moving again, and the testimony and depositions have been interesting to follow. But now it looks as though, just as it’s getting started again, it may come to a complete halt. Locking Out Competitors At heart, the case has to do with the way Apple continually...

Thoughts on adjusting to Kindle Unlimited as an author
December 2, 2014 | 4:25 pm

kindle unlimitedThis post started its life as a comment to Nate's post on how authors are unhappy with Kindle Unlimited. It quickly grew to a post in its own right. I agree that Kindle Unlimited has not been a good thing for authors. I've seen the impact on my own sales. Before KU was launched,  I was on track to triple my income from last year. Looks like instead I'm going to do a bit better than doubling. Yes, that's disappointing. However, I decided when I started that I was looking at this long term, and I'm still having a way better...

Amazon issues EU VAT guidelines for KDP authors
December 2, 2014 | 10:24 am

KDPFollowing the introduction of the European Union's new VAT-MOSS regime, as reported by Chris Meadows, Amazon has now issued details on the implementation of VAT collection for Kindle Direct Publishing, and KDP authors like me have received a lengthy email from the Kindle Direct Publishing Team covering the new regulations. It begins as follows: Hello, On January 1, 2015, European Union (EU) tax laws regarding the taxation of digital products (including eBooks) will change: previously, Value Added Tax (VAT) was applied based on the seller’s country – as of January 1st, VAT will be applied based on the buyer’s country. As a...

Amazon’s Kiva robots herald warehouse automation
December 1, 2014 | 10:28 pm

kiva_robotsHere’s an interesting feature on Amazon’s Kiva robots, used to automate the process of filling orders in some of its warehouses. I hadn’t been entirely clear on how those robots worked, but the article does a great job explaining. The Kiva robots essentially resemble oversized Roombas—squat hockey-puck-shaped gizmos that trundle along the warehouse floors. They operate by latching onto huge inventory shelves and carrying them along with them to “stow stations” where workers load incoming shipments of merchandise into them, or to “picking stations” where order pickers grab the merchandise and put it into a box. To hear...

New European VAT law could threaten small e-businesses
November 29, 2014 | 10:19 pm

New European Union regulations regarding value-added taxes (a sort of European equivalent of sales tax) will take effect January 1, 2015 that could cause problems for businesses selling electronic goods and services. Referred to as VAT MOSS (for “Mini One-Stop Shop,” the web portal each member state will run to make payments easier), the new regulations put the onus on businesses that provide “telecoms/broadcast/electronic services” to EU customers to keep track of and charge each customer VAT at the rates that apply to the country where that customer lives. Previously, businesses were free to charge at the rate that...

Amazon adds UK post offices to bricks-and-mortar footprint
November 27, 2014 | 4:42 pm

British Booksellers AssociationAmazon has just expanded its distribution and delivery network in the UK by partnering with the Royal Mail to deliver Amazon packages to British post offices - an arrangement that observers say could help to support the ailing UK postal service, already under attack from private sector competitors in the parcels and door-to-door delivery space. The UK post office network, spun off from the delivery network in April 2012 as Post Office Ltd., gives Amazon around 10,500 new points of presence across the country, "taking the total number of Amazon pickup points across the UK to more than 16,000," according...

Thanksgiving Links: Amazon & B&N reveal Black Friday deals. In defense of copyright
November 27, 2014 | 10:38 am

thanksgiving.jpgAmazon and Barnes & Noble Reveal Black Friday Deals (GoodeReader) Amazon and Barnes and Noble are gearing up for one of the biggest shopping days in the US with some mighty deals. *** Global Net Neutrality Coalition (Boing Boing) The Electronic Frontier Foundation has teamed up with organizations around the world to fight for net neutrality everywhere, because this isn't an issue that just affects Americans. You can help by finding a group in your country and joining in. *** The 12-Book Program: A Holiday Survival Guide (Book Riot) Lucky for us, there are books to advise us, guide us, and help us get away. (Nothing says...