Monday, 19 December 2011

Ripping-off Yarns

Do Kindle books come in hardback and paperback versions, and if so, are they priced differently?

I was reading an article which claims that Kindle e-books are 9% more expensive than the equivalent paper book, rising to 11% when only paperbacks are considered.


  1. WoW, Bill amazing! Thank you for pointing this out to me. Another point to make printed books have fewer mistakes in them as they are editored before printing unlike most author-uploaded books. I've read two ebooks just lately, and found mistakes which have been overlooked by the writers. It happens, but a publisher is only allowed a small number of mistakes.

  2. I was only reading my Kindle edition of Adam Smith's Wealth of Nations (1776) the other day when I cam across the quote "People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices". Amazon have started including the phrase "THIS PRICE HAS BEEN SET BY THE PUBLISHER" when it quotes Kindle book proces.

  3. Alan: I wonder if the difference is down to the fact books attract no VAT, whereas e-books do, in which case e-books are indeed cheaper before tax.

  4. Alan: PS - your comment made me think of Marx's observation that capitalism encourages efficiency, which leads to increasing specialisation of labour and the rise of the very low-paid to do the drudgery involved in manufacturing.

    Just look at car manufacturing - in the early days, the mechanic was involved in all aspects of manufacture, where as now you have people doing drone work at the bottom of the production line. Thanks Mr Ford.

  5. It's the VAT, if you look on the US site you'll see that e-prices are much less than paper based ones.

    You'd have thought that the Government would be keen to promote e-books they are clearly more environmentally friendly than chopping down trees, pulping, printing and transporting in gas guzzling trucks around the country. Perhaps this is because electronic media isn't approved in the King James Bible? or maybe the paper is needed to burn witches...

  6. A similar point can be made for all the junk mail and advertising that the postman pushes though my door. I would have thought that the government, if they were truly worried about environmental issues, would have banned that a long time ago. Ours (and I guess that of many others) goes straight from the doormat to the recycling bin.

    With kindest regards to all,


  7. It's all really a bit amazing, isn't it?

    If we were really serious about fixing the mess we've created e-books would cost next to nothing and cars, let's face it they're very energy ineffecient, would be a thing of the past.