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Kevin: Mark Mulligan of Forrester Research writes in paidContent: "We are currently in the midst of a painful transition, and we don’t yet have a set of next generation media products that consumers will pay for on the scale they paid for physical products."
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Kevin: Amazon has announced a new programme for its Kindle e-reader that will allow publishers to keep more revenue for some of content they release on the platform. For publishersm and authors, the Kindle hasn't been a good deal for them. They only get 7-15% of the list price for digital books. Under the new programme, they will get to keep 70%, but the deal comes with strings attacheed. "The list price for your title must be both between $2.99 to $9.99 and be 20 percent below the lowest physical book price; title also must be “offered at or below price parity with competition, including physical book prices”. The title also needs to be included in a broad set of features in the Kindle Store, e.g. text-to-speech. Finally, the title must be made available for sale “in all geographies for which the author or publisher has rights”.
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Kevin: The title is pretty self-explanatory on this one. Publishers Lunch, a daily paid newsletter, did some reporting and research and found based on numbers from Amazon's Kindle forum that: "over half of reporting Kindle owners are 50 or older, and 70 percent are 40 or older". Joshua Benton at Nieman says after seeing these numbers, "It’s older folks — not the gadget crowd, not the young bookloving crowd, and not the mathematical intersect of the two." If Kindle readers are older, this is not going to capture the demographic that newspapers looking for new revenue streams are hoping for.
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Kevin: Steve Yelvington looks at the idea of the Boston Globe moving to a paid content model based on Amazon's Kindle. Rolling out a Kindle will require a lot of upfront capital, something hard to come by during the credit crunch. He suggests looking at the mobile phone industry for the kind of costs you'd need to amortise over six years. Moreover, he looks at the loss of revenue from classifieds, display advertising and banner advertising on a device like the Kindle. He also worries about Amazon as a middleman who will take a slice of an already lower margin business than newspapers.