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A changing book business: it all seems to be flowing downhill to Amazon | The Idea Logical Company
That has produced the world where big publishers with their agency-priced ebooks tell us that ebook sales have flattened or declined and that print book sales are holding their own, but Amazon says ebook sales are continuing to grow. And it is also a world where the big publishers are working feverishly, and largely futilely, to make their non-Amazon sales grow.

It certainly appears that the changes mandated by the Department of Justice a few years ago have strengthened the two most powerful players in the game. Amazon was always going to be the beneficiary of that legal action, and they have continued to grow. And the biggest publisher, Random House, because they made a tactical decision to eschew agency pricing when it started, was not sued when the other big publishers (including Penguin, which Random House subsequently acquired) were. Penguin Random House is now by far the biggest single trade publishing house, with a volume not far off what the other four deliver combined.

Fortunately for those of us who want to understand the changing industry, a new data source has arisen. Data Guy, first encouraged by indie author star Hugh Howey (one of the early beneficiaries of the changed marketplace), is now one of the principals behind, an online-sales database built by scraping Amazon and other major online retailers. Bookstats’s realtime dashboard presents a consolidated, title-level view of the online US market, current through yesterday. It includes Amazon sales. It separates out Amazon Publishing from the indie authors Amazon enables. And, when used alongside data from Bookscan, Bookstat now lets us back out how brick-and-mortar sales alone are faring in relation to online.

And BookStat delivers the first third-party reported stats on the digital content delivered within the book business.

So I asked Data Guy whether he could offer evidence to support or refute my hypotheses about how the industry is now changing. I have inserted what I learned from him in line with my contentions below.
Shatzkin  data  ebooks  USA  dataguy 
3 hours ago by sentinelle
"Get Out of Jail Free" Cards - Marginal REVOLUTION
In the movies I’ve seen people who try to get out of a traffic ticket by telling the police officer they made a donation to the policeman’s ball, but those were comedies. I had no idea that not only does this exist there are official cards. In fact, the police in New York are livid that the number of cards is being limited.
usa  law 
yesterday by lehmannro
Government shutdown: Russian bots are helping Republicans blame Democrats with #schumershutdown — Quartz
The GOP is getting a boost with that message from a now-familiar ally: Russian bots. In the last 48 hours, Russia-linked Twitter accounts tweeted #schumershutdown more than any other hashtag, according to Hamilton 68, a project run by the German Marshall Fund think tank that tracks tweets “tied to Russia-linked influence networks.”
twitter  propaganda  russia  usa  government  politics  corruption 
yesterday by po
‘Negotiating with Jell-O’: How Trump’s shifting positions fueled the rush to a shutdown
“Kirstjen Nielsen, Trump’s homeland security secretary, and her staff passed out a four-page document on the administration’s ‘must haves’ for any immigration bill — a hard-line list… which was obtained by The Washington Post. But one person seemed surprised and alarmed by the memo: the president. With Democratics and Republicans still in the room, Trump said that the document didn’t represent all of his positions, that he wasn’t familiar with its contents and that he didn’t appreciate being caught off-guard. He instructed the group to disregard the summary and move on…”
usa  politics  government  trump  idiocy  wapo 
yesterday by syskill

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