Kindles are still for suckers.

13 11 2011

If there is anything good about e-books besides weighing less than the paper variety, it would have to be the way they de-emphasize the material aspect of owning books and emphasize the importance of the ideas within them. I think that’s why Bookshelf Porn associates itself with porn. Good liberals like me feel slightly guilty about coveting so many objects at once.

Amazon.com, however, appears to be doing everything it can to exploit such proclivities for its own material gain. When I wrote my original “Kindles Are for Suckers” post, the price of the Kindle version of David McCullough’s The Greater Journey was pennies more than the hardback. [I now see that that relationship has reversed since the book came out.] As I write this, the Kindle version of Neil MacGregor’s A History of the World in 100 Objects is over five dollars more expensive than the paperback.

This would explain why Amazon.com is selling a device that costs $84 to make for $79. While there are other e-readers out there, Amazon has a monopoly on all things Kindle. With no used copies of e-books circulating to keep down prices, why not test what the traffic will allow?

Maybe a little materialism isn’t such a bad thing in the end. It might even end up saving you money.


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4 responses

14 11 2011
Ally

Well yes and no.

I personally own a kindle. I bought it (cheapest available at the time) the day I’d realized I’d claimed over 100 free kindle books already that I wasn’t reading on the computer.

I have only actually paid for a handful of books ever for the Kindle, and only one of those that was over approximately $2. If I’m going to spend more than a buck or two, I want the print. But the Kindle is a nice way to access the free ebooks that are out there, and now that the public library has books available through the Kindle as well.

But yes, if you’re planning to buy full priced ebooks it’s a bad move.

26 06 2012
When your books aren’t really yours. « More or Less Bunk

[…] I’ve written that e-readers are unnecessary. I’ve written that they are for suckers (twice). However, I still remember a comment by “Middle Seaman”* in the first of those […]

6 09 2012
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[…] longtime readers might remember, I find the reasons for the existence of the Kindle platform much less compelling. Thanks to […]

10 11 2013
In which I make an embarrassing admission. | More or Less Bunk

[…] but then you’re not the author of posts like “Kindles are for suckers,” “Kindles are still for suckers,” and much more along these lines. To summarize, I went from wanting a Kindle desperately, to hating […]

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