New York Systems

I'm David. I live in Astoria. During the day I work at a startup. Other times I visit bookstores.
This blog is my curio collection, sort of. I'll have a place of my own for essays... someday.

Posts tagged #internet killed your *

Sad to see them go; I started reading at issue three and always enjoyed it.

Wait, the author who is profoundly irritated by Hipsters herself exhibits Hipster tendencies? Isn’t that just a little bit ir—*ALANIS MORISSETTE PRESSES COLD BARREL OF PISTOL AGAINST BACK OF BLOGGER’S SKULL, SLOWLY SHAKES HER HEAD*

In any line of business where you’re earning healthy profits you always need to worry that a competitor will undercut you on price. But normally you can also have some confidence that they’ll be restrained in their price cutting by the need to maintain profits of their own. Amazon is totally off the leash in this regard. Wall Street treats it like a brand new startup that just needs to think about growth and can find a viable business model later. Which means that if they come after you, you have no recourse. Your profits are going to shrink, and your investors are going to punish you for it but Amazon’s profits don’t necessarily need to grow proportionally. They just need to show they can poach your market share.

Be afraid.

The previously-anonymous creator of the popular Tumblr blog Hollywood Assistants has sold a sitcom to CBS inspired by her blog, which airs the day-to-day grievances of Hollywood assistants, illustrated with GIFs from television and movies. Some recent posts include “WHEN PEOPLE ASK HOW I AM FIRST THING IN THE MORNING” and “WHEN SOMEONE TELLS ME TO BE THE BIGGER PERSON.” As many have noted, it’s similar to many other GIF-centric blogs such as What Should We Call Me.

“Digital is its own audit.” That’s really kind of interesting to me. I’m used to unique counts being obscured and lied about. But I hadn’t considered the open-count public services. And, of course, this is what Likes and RTs and +1s lead to. A world where we encourage everyone to vote on everything (an element of more than a few sf pieces).

Cultural voting, of course, leads to the triage suggested in the quote: following counts leads inexorably to media that play only the things they already know people like.

Which makes me prize things like Mary Anne Hobbs’ Saturday night show on XFM all the more: because I know that for three hours I will hear things that I have never heard before.

Of course, there’s a meta-level of this attention-voting at work, as well. Curators have their own followings, alongside the media they curate.

Warren Ellis » When The Internet Deletes Hype


The Success Baby meme appears on billboards.

The internet is leaking.

"Who Decides What Gets Sold In The Bookstore?"

I just found out that Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) is rejecting my new manifesto Stop Stealing Dreams and won’t carry it in their store because inside the manifesto are links to buy the books I mention in the bibliography.

Quoting here from their note to me, rejecting the book: “Multiple links to Amazon store. IE page 35, David Weinberger link.”

And there’s the conflict. We’re heading to a world where there are just a handful of influential bookstores (Amazon, Apple, Nook…) and one by one, the principles of open access are disappearing. Apple, apparently, won’t carry an ebook that contains a link to buy a hardcover book from Amazon.

That’s amazing to me. It must be a mistake, right?

Oh Seth. Oh, poor poor Seth Godin.

Hasn’t someone at Amazon mentioned it to you in your ‘exclusive partnership’ with them? Amazon and Apple aren’t running “bookstores”. They’re running content services for their devices. Completely different.

Totally, completely different.

"SFWA is redirecting links"

In recent days, decided to remove more than 4000 e-books from its website after a pricing dispute with IPG. The Independent Publishing Group is one of the largest independent distributors in the United States.

While Amazon has the right to decide with what company it does business, its removal of many of our authors’ books from its ordering system will have an economic impact on them. Our authors depend on people buying their books and a significant percentage of them have books distributed through IPG. Therefore, SFWA is redirecting links from the organization’s website to other booksellers because we would prefer to send traffic to stores where the books can actually be purchased.

To that end, our volunteers are in the process of redirecting book links to, Powell’s, and Barnes and Noble.

[source.] Emphasis mine. What good is an e-reader if no one wants to submit to your terms to have their content on it?

Barnes and Noble went through a version of this back in the 90s, when they were the big bad wolf in the publishing industry. (The company still demands a 55% discount off cover price for buying books from publishers, and are by no means a small fish.) But Bezos is the man that scares the publishing industry now, because he wants to be what neither Barnes and Noble or Borders ever tried to be: a publisher.

Amazon is no longer just another marketplace. It’s direct competition for publishers.

Canada’s Torstar reported fourth-quarter and fiscal year results Wednesday, and the performance of Harlequin fits the general pattern of other publicly-reported trade publishers: sales were down a little, and operating earnings rose. This is what the digital transition looks like.