Joseph Ratliff Writer, Researcher, Thinker

Why The Publishing Price “Fight” Is Totally Unnecessary

Too much focus on “the number” here.

$4.99, $15.99, heck $99.99 … so what? The market of readers won’t buy something they do not value in e-format. The traditional publishing companies, if they don’t realize that, and are too hung up on the “price” … will suffer a greater loss as competition “prices” them out of the market.

But this price argument turns these books into commodities if that’s the only argument being made, though. Are books commodities? I hope not.

I hope they have some value beyond price alone.

But the reader (like me) will determine that. I don’t make that decision based on the format of the book, though. I make that decision based on content value in the book. The author themselves doesn’t play much of a role, unless it is an author that has earned my trust and hard earned money.

Do you want your books to become Milk at the grocery store?

But in the end, when we realize the market (readers) has likely already spoken, and that is why Amazon is setting the price at $9.99 or lower (because it understands the digital market better than any company I’ve seen thus far) … we can realize this “fight for prices” has already been “won.”

Traditional publishing companies are in quicksand right now, the more they fight, the more they sink. And I hope Mr. Preston and his friends all realize that THEY do not set the market, the market sets the market.

If they think they are something special, they’re about to get a serious wake up call. There is WAY too much content available, competing for the limited attention of the readers.

The way I see it, content (supply) is high, and reader attention (demand) is low … therefor the price will go down. Basic economics. The platform (Amazon and e-readers etc…) only accelerates the price race to the bottom (IF books are thought of as a commodity).

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