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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Recent changes at Amazon - what do you think?


Recently Amazon has made some changes to their policies. Whether or not they are targeted at Indies, many agree that it will affect them. Here are the ones I've seen or heard about.
  • No tags
  • No like button
  • They are trying to discourage the promoting of free ebooks
I sort of get that last one. Some sites only promote free books, which is a great service, but I can see where Amazon might not like it. After all, they aren't making as much money that way. Or so they think. You see, some people might get to Amazon by way of a free offer but linger and buy something. Maybe that doesn't happen as often as Amazon would like.

Will this stop the free book hoarders? Probably not. As long as they offer free books, some people will find them and never buy a single item.

Which is why I'm surprised Amazon does the free thing anyway, and I wouldn't be surprised if Amazon further limits the feature so that the casual browser cannot find a "free" section. The only way for an author to promote said free book in such a situation would be to promote it themselves.

Yeah, that's how it is now for the most part, but if the free listings and ranking went away, the only way you'd know about a free book is if the author (or an agent or promoter of the author) told you about it. Maybe that's the way it should be.

What do you think?


The reasoning behind taking away tags and the like button seems to be misuse. I don't necessarily understand this. If a writer, Indie or not, gets a thousand people to tag and like their book, isn't that a good thing for Amazon?

Yeah, I know that's a loaded question. But shouldn't the principle be that the person who works the hardest at promotion be allowed to see results? Does taking away the above tools limit what a writer can do to promote their book? Is this going to hurt Indies in other words?

What do you think?

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