Your E-Book Is Reading You

The Wall Street Journal:

The major new players in e-book publishing—Amazon, Apple and Google—can easily track how far readers are getting in books, how long they spend reading them and which search terms they use to find books. Book apps for tablets like the iPad, Kindle Fire and Nook record how many times readers open the app and how much time they spend reading. Retailers and some publishers are beginning to sift through the data, gaining unprecedented insight into how people engage with books.

Publishing has lagged far behind the rest of the entertainment industry when it comes to measuring consumers’ tastes and habits. TV producers relentlessly test new shows through focus groups; movie studios run films through a battery of tests and retool them based on viewers’ reactions. But in publishing, reader satisfaction has largely been gauged by sales data and reviews—metrics that offer a postmortem measure of success but can’t shape or predict a hit. That’s beginning to change as publishers and booksellers start to embrace big data, and more tech companies turn their sights on publishing.

Barnes & Noble, which accounts for 25% to 30% of the e-book market through its Nook e-reader, has recently started studying customers’ digital reading behavior". Data collected from Nooks reveals, for example, how far readers get in particular books, how quickly they read and how readers of particular genres engage with books. Jim Hilt, the company’s vice president of e-books, says the company is starting to share their insights with publishers to help them create books that better hold people’s attention.

I’m going back to paper books & I’ll use cash, not credit card.

Meh. My Kindle can’t tattle on me if I don’t turn the wireless internet function on, and the only time I turn it on is when I download new purchases.

Exactly Dave. :slight_smile:

I love my Kindle - didn’t particularly want one but I was given one as a gift and now I wouldn’t be without it!

It’s not like the cam on you iPad turns on and they watch you when you read.

Re: Your E-Book Is Reading You
Meh. My Kindle can’t tattle on me if I don’t turn the wireless internet function on, and the only time I turn it on is when I download new purchases.

Also you device will update them the moment you dl a new book. Sorry:rolleyes:

I don’t buy e-books–it makes no sense to me to pay almost as much for a book that I can’t keep or give away or re-sell or lend to someone…

But I am really going through some classics :slight_smile:

Even if you rarely turn on the wireless function, wouldn’t the packet of collected information be sent at those times?

As Kithrus mentioned, the devices aren’t likely to be relaying information in real time. Instead they would collect statistics and only occasionally forward the data home.

But other than the creepiness factor, I am not sure there is any harm to this data collection, so long as it is aggregated and not personalized.

Why can’t you keep them? Or lend them?

I do both.

And I don’t really care what Amazon knows about my reading habits. :shrug:

I love having a library that I can carry around in my backpack and I can read anything I want wherever I want. If Apple and Amazon are interested in what I’m reading, that’s fine with me. Then they can point out new titles to me that I might have missed otherwise.

I actually SO want an e-book reader! I haven’t done enough research yet to decide between the nook or kindle, but I want ont of those. And as far as the gathered info, as someone else said, as long as the info is just indescript data and not personalized, I’m good.

The EBook is the least of your worries.

I am going to stop using my cell phone and internet and start sending smoke signals.

Your phone and internet usage tells more about you then you E-Reader.

I LOVE my eBook.

The best part is the ability to download books, pretty much, anywhere. At the doctor’s office? Download a book. Sitting, like I was, at the hospital for hours at a time? Download a book. Long car or train trip? Download a book.

I did the research at the end of last year and bought myself a Kindle Keyboard for Christmas, and I’m very pleased with my choice. I wanted only a book reader, not a vid player, and I wanted to be able to read in direct sunlight, so the black-and-white page format of the Keyboard was for me.

Even if you don’t have a Kindle now, you can download the Kindle Cloud Reader and use your computer as a Kindle. Using my netbook like that convinced me that I really wanted to get a real one.

(Where in 'Bama are you? PM me if you don’t want to put it out in the open.)

I also love my Kindle (keyboard). I have a laptop, so I also didn’t need a vid player, just an ereader.

(Also in Alabama)

So Chapters/Indigo cares if I finish reading The Arians of the 4th Century by J.H. Newman? Wow, someone has less of a life than me… :wink:

I like my kindle. I have about fifty books that can all fit in my pocket at once. Pretty handy.

Also, why would you care if they track your reading habits? Its not like they can hurt you by checking how far into a book you read, or how fast you read. It amounts to marketing data. The data they collect will only make the books more suitable to those people who read on the kindle. I don’t see what is so creapy about this.


I have leaned toward the kindle. However, as I said, this is with no research. But I definitely must get one for all the reasons listed by others here.

True, but I hardly use my cell phone. I have it basically just for emergencies.

I do like my Nook but if I’m somewhat disenchanted with ebooks. They are overpriced compared to regular books (usually more than the pb), considering that there’s no production or shipping costs. Since to don’t own them you can’t donate them or give them away, so make sure you only buy keepers.
Otoh, there are plenty of good free books out there

And, if I were starting over, I’d buy one that isn’t linked to a retailer like Amazon (Kindle) or Barnes & Noble (Nook). I was looking at alternatives and BeBooks looks interesting.

As for e-readers collecting data, yes it is analyzed in bulk but they could follow individuals if they wanted to. And it basically irks me that they are grabbing valuable data (they obviously think it is) without an opt-out option.

When they first came out you kind of had to get one that was affiliated. The selection of books for the non affiliated readers was not so good.

That being said, I have a 3rd Generation Kindle and it is awesome. I was apprehensive at first. Thinking I would miss the smell of the book, the ability to browse a book stores.

I got it a year and a half ago and I havent looked back. I do miss the book smell, but having my books at a touch of a button and it is so much easier to hold while I am reading lying down.

They can be a bit more expensive then paperbacks, but not enough of a deterrence for me.

:eek: I have a Kindle and I have yet to buy an eBook that is more expensive than the paperback (retail price). Plus, with the number of books and anthologies available for free or 99 cents, I have offset the cost many times over.

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