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Graphite Kindle DX

Graphite Kindle DX is available for pre-order now and it will be available July 7th.

What Amazon says about the new DX: Our graphite Kindle DX uses our all new, improved electronic ink display, with 50% better contrast for the clearest text and sharpest images

Video about Graphite DX

Amazon buys Woot

Amazon bought the site Woot.com

Story in the NYT: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/01/technology/01woot.html?ref=technology

Amazon.com, which sells millions of products, said Wednesday that it had agreed to buy Woot, a site that sells one item at a time.

Woot is one of a cluster of unconventional shopping sites that have sprung up in the last few years in the biggest flurry of e-commerce innovation since Amazon and eBay began.

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Amazon to Introduce Web Based Book Previews

Continuing it’s e-books everywhere approach to digital reading, the company announced Wednesday in a blog post that it would soon offer a product called “Kindle Previewer for HTML 5? that will allow readers to view samples of books directly from within a Web browser.

In the past Amazon has required readers to send a sample section of a book to a device before it could be previewed.

Full article

Paperback Kindle

Seth Godin at Wired.com

Steve Jobs reports today that Apple is selling an iPad every three seconds.

This is a pretty urgent moment for my friends on the Kindle team, so here are some bonus thoughts on pricing, business models and competition:

1. The paperback Kindle. Don't worry about touchscreens or color or even always available internet to download new books. Make a $49 Kindle. Not so hard if you use available wifi and simplify the device. Make it the only ebook reader in town.

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ACLU threatens to join Amazon customer privacy fight

The American Civil Liberties Union of North Carolina is telling the state Department of Revenue to back off on a request for "constitutionally protected private information" of Amazon.com customers.

In a letter Thursday to Revenue Secretary Kenneth Lay, the group says it will join an existing lawsuit brought by the online retail giant if the department "persists in its demand" for North Carolina customers' names and addresses.

Full article here.

Amazon Top 100

As books enter the top 100 on Amazon they get tracked on this site. It is a good way to see what books the public is interested in. Site is updated daily.

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Amazon Sues North Carolina

Amazon has filed a lawsuit in federal court in Seattle against the North Carolina Department of Revenue charging that its demand that Amazon turnover the names and addresses of all residents who bought anything from the e-tailer since 2003 is an invasion of privacy and a violation of the First Amendment. The request by North Carolina is part of that state's efforts to collect sales tax on items purchased by North Carolina residents from Amazon. In the complaint, Amazon also said North Carolina is demanding it turnover records of what each customer purchased and how much they paid.

When North Carolina first announced its plans to collect sales tax from online retailers, Amazon closed down the affiliates program in the state, arguing that without that program the state had no nexus to collect sales tax.

Publishers Weekly reports.

The professor, his wife, and the secret, savage book reviews on Amazon

The professor, his wife, and the secret, savage book reviews on Amazon
An extraordinary literary "whodunnit" over the identity of a mystery reviewer who savaged works by some of Britain's leading academics on the Amazon website has culminated in a top historian admitting that the culprit was, in fact, his wife.

Amazon reviewers think this masterpiece sucks

From "The Grapes of Wrath" to "1984" -- some amateur critics just can't stand the classics

Article at Salon.com

Only Branding Can Save the ebook Industry

Jay Garmon writes in The New Sleekness about ebooks, branding, authors and publishers. If only Marshall McLuhan were alive today...

"A solid brand is the only way anyone is going to make sustainable money, long term, directly from e-book sales. This is not to say that e-books will sell in the same numbers, or for the same prices, as physical books. This is also not to say that e-book publishing houses are going to look anything like physical book publishing houses. This is simply an argument that the only value that the consumer is going to consistently place on an e-book is its brand value.

e-book pricing is viewed by many consumers as wildly out of step with the perceived value of the product. No matter how you parse the numbers or sketch out production costs or trot out sob stories of how scandalously little money the average writer makes, consumers simply don’t perceive an intangible good as having the same value as a tangible good. Thus, if you want e-books to sell, you simply can’t price them the same as physical books. It doesn’t matter if it’s reasonable. It doesn’t matter if it’s fair. To turn a profit in a competitive market economy, a producer is obligated to deliver a product at a price lower than the perceived consumer value. If Producer A (in this case established publishing houses) can’t do it, Producer B (some new e-book publisher, like maybe Amazon itself ) will do so."

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