Some fire has been burning about a recent network (LendInk) that connects readers to digital books that are in fact able to be lent.
LendInk is dead for now.
Here’s the story as I read it…
- The Techdirt piece, which explains it very well and links out to various other pieces.
- April Hamilton, who wrote a nicely scathing yet accurate review of the situation.
- Amanda Brice, who on Kindle Boards posted a solid explanation of a now infamous email from Amazon (#Amazonfail by the way). This isn’t rocket science at all.
- An even simpler explanation of this situation at AbsoluteWrite forums by user Terie.
- And Author’s Guild… or The Dinosaur’s Guild in my opinion, with not one… but three different contributions (Techdirt wrote the pieces) on a business model that is dying a slow death. While these pieces didn’t directly contribute to the LendInk fiasco… they demonstrate that an “upgrade” to an outdated business model is very necessary.
And of course… my take on this LendInk mess:
The bottom line here is the authors who supported the “let’s get rid of LendInk, they pirated my book” camp are outright wrong for a number of reasons.
1. LendInk hosted NO ebooks on its site… it was a matchmaker, nothing more. Amazon or other companies did the lending itself… the authors that supported getting rid of LendInk should have read their contracts, and took this up with Amazon, BN, etc…
2. This was a MARKETING opportunity for the authors in question… and they blew it big time by claiming “victory” over LendInk. All this site was doing was introducing new readers into the author’s communities… and they could have profited from book sales to those readers. But no, instead they had to get righteous, and slam free advertising. Sad really.
3. There is a list of these authors posted on the Internet, I won’t link to this list because the author of the website who listed these authors is a bit negative (although his beliefs seem to be in line). You can find this list via Google I’m sure… but the point is, by joining the “kill LendInk” camp… you’ve just cost yourself potential book sales.
Now, some of these authors claim they work their butts off and should get every dime due to be paid them. Yep, they should… but should they skip over dollar bills to chase these dimes in this fashion?
Work “above” the piracy, authors… which means see how you can turn it into positive sales for yourself… which happens quite a bit actually as most of the pirates in question end up buying the material they pirate… if it’s good.
Besides… you do give out review copies do you not? I’ve personally, as an Amazon Vine Member myself, purchased copies of the books I’m allowed to review under that program. If they are good that is.
FINAL THOUGHT: Are your books good enough to profit from, even in the face of piracy? Or are you going to keep chasing dimes and nickels in the name of copyright?
The choice is yours.