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Kindle and WP.com Blogs

  1. Are WP.com blogs allowed to be on Kindle?

  2. Maybe I'm missing something, but what's Kindle? Can you provide a link? The only Kindle I know is Amazon's e-book reader.

  3. That's the Kindle we're talking about, cjwriter.

    In addition to books, you can read magazines and newspapers on it.

    You can also read blogs on a Kindle for a subscription price of around $.99-1.99 USD per blog per month.

    http://www.amazon.com/kindle

    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/ref=kinw_ddp/B000MV9BBG

  4. My bad. I should have looked at it more closely; I knew it had experimental support for web browsing, so I thought that might be what you meant. Didn't know it could support blogs.

    I think this is something you'll have to contact staff about; as it's so new, I don't think any of the volunteers will be able to provide a definitive answer (though someone might prove me wrong). My suspicion is as someone would be paying to read a blog that it probably won't be allowed, but it might depend on how the blog is listed.
    http://wordpress.com/contact-support/

  5. boles - send me all the information? I've looked at those 2 links and Amazon's woefully dire support and find nothing even remotely useful.

  6. Hey Mark --

    Go here: http://www.amazon.com/b?ie=UTF8&node=133141011 and look at the very bottom of the left side column. There's a link there for more information to get your blog added to Kindle.

    I had several emails from my blog readers this morning asking if Urban Semiotic is included in the Kindle bundle or not and if it wasn't -- would it be?

    I just wrote to them and asked this:

    ***

    Dear Kindle --

    How do you get your blog included on Kindle?

    My blog is located at http://urbansemiotic.com and it is updated daily.

    Do you reformat the blog into plain text?

    I'm not interested in getting paid for a subscription -- so can you "Kindle-zie" the blog without needing to pay the blogger?

    Thanks!

    db

    --
    David W. Boles
    http://BolesUniversity.com

    ***

    I'll let you know if I hear anything.

  7. P.S. --

    It will be interesting to see who owns the content when a blog is on Kindle. Are people paying Kindle a subscription fee to have your blog made readable on Kindle -- a fair enough expense, I suppose, for the convenience involved and the bandwidth used -- or is Kindle "paying" the blog for the right to republish on Kindle, and if so, what are the conditions of that propagation concerning Copyright and ownership?

  8. I wait their response to the above :)

    (Though it is Amazon Support. They have difficulty with the last 7 letters of that previous sentence in my experience.)

  9. Mark --

    It took two others on my blog staff to even FIND that link to contact them -- so, yes, I think it will be a long while before get a reply... or their terms will be so awful we'll have a good laugh.

    I'll post back here if I hear from them.

  10. The following para is I think relevant here:
    You can also enter any URL, including Bloglines (but not Google Reader, which requires Javascript and which the Kindle browser does not support). So here is a Kindle hack: you can check out your RSS feeds for the New York Times or the full feed of blogs like TechCrunch for free using the browser, rather than choose to pay a subscription to get them downloaded to the Kindle. I don’t have high hopes for the Kindle’s ability to bring back subscription revenues for publishers of any kind.

    That's from a TechCrunch post on Kindle:
    http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/11/19/kindle-first-impressions/

    I think that the "hack" will be widely used, and agree with Erick Schonfeld that not many people will pay to subscribe to blogs.

  11. As I understand it, andrew, the reason you want your blog to be a "subscription" on Kindle is to have your blog "properly formatted" for the device so it shows up properly as you published it... whatever that means.

    I don't know if Kindle render images and other stuff from a blog or not -- but if the "Kindleized" version of your blog is just a formatted RSS feed, then I can't imagine anyone wanting to pay for content. I would find it curiously stupid, though, that Amazon wouldn't anticipate that reader runaround.

  12. MINOR UPDATE:

    I just read "pulling an RSS feed" on a Kindle without "buying a blog subscription" costs a dollar.

    Kindles should start showing up in "regular people's" hands today -- so getting the lowdown on the real cost should prove fascinating.

    When you buy your Kindle from Amazon it is auto-linked to your Amazon.com account so you can start buying stuff for it the moment after you click the buy button and Whispernet will deliver it to your Kindle automatically.

  13. UPDATE:

    I heard from Amazon today. Here is their reply:

    ***

    Hi David,

    We do reform the blog for the device, but it's not plain text. We do include photos. Normally we do pay a revenue share, but we can make the revenue share zero if you do not want to be paid. Even if you are not paid, however, we still need your "signed" permission to syndicate your content. Please look for an email from this alias in the next few minutes that includes a link to an online form. The online form is pretty self-explanatory, but if you have any questions, please feel free to contact me at this email address. The form screens submissions based on email address so you must use your same email address on the form.

    Note that the form does include a revenue share, but I can override the revenue share on the form if you send me an email stating that you do not want to be paid.

    Once you have "signed" the online form, a tech person will contact you if we have any questions about your feed. I will also send you more information on how to promote the Kindle on your site.

    ***

    I think this is a fine way to get your blog seen in a whole new way for a brand new audience.

  14. Thanks for your information. There's been a lot written on Kindle since it's release. Although Amazon has not revealed how many Kindle's were in the orginal release, what we do know is that they sold out in 51/2 hours and Amazon's site says they'll be back in stock on the 29th, but availability is first-come, first-served basis.,
    http://hardware.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/11/21/1931203

    Here are most of the missing pieces on Amazon's Kindle.
    * It doesn't use a generic RSS aggregator -- it's Amazon-selected blogs only (and they "want every blog they can get"). Blogs that are aggregated by the Kindle get a revenue share with Amazon, since it costs money to get those publications.
    * The side scroller is, as we expected, a polarized PNLCD (pneumatic LCD). It looks amazing.
    * It's SD only, not SDHC.
    * It uses the Kindle file format (which is a variant of structured HTML), but also accepts Word and PDF files (but only via email since they need to be converted by Amazon), Mobi, HTML, plaintext, and image files like JPEG, GIF, and PNG. Sorry, no RTF.
    * Oh yes, it supports Audible! Oh, and a little, unused file format called MP3.
    * It has a user-replaceable, 1530mAh battery
    * You can bind five or six devices to a single account, and share books you've purchased to those accounts. There's no simultaneous reading lock, so if you and your significant other are on the same Amazon account you can both read the same book at the same time on your Kindles.
    * Amazon is also releasing the Digital Text Platform, which allows users to upload their own content to the Kindle store for sale and download.
    * The $9.99 price point is the sweet spot, but there are books for sale from the Gutenberg project for under $1 (if you don't want to download them for free yourself), and upwards of that quoted $10 price point as well.
    * Amazon wouldn't say who makes the device, just that "it's an OEM in China."
    http://www.engadget.com/tag/kindle

  15. If you enjoy writing and you want to directly reach your readers, the Kindle is a fine way to cut out the publisher as I wrote here:

    http://www.wordpunk.com/2007/11/kindle-author.html

    As well, I plan to fully examine the Kindle as a publishing platform in my WP.com blog soon. Amazon are preparing my Kindle right now for shipment so it should be here in a day or two.

    eReaders are pathways of gold for self-publishing authors and, as they replace books, so too, will authors replace publishers and the traditional hardcopy distribution networks.

  16. Indeed Kindle has received a lot of promotion and Amazon's site says they'll be back in stock on the 29th, but availability is first-come, first-served basis. Hence it seems time is of the essence if one wishes to be an early adopter.

  17. I placed my order the day it went on sale and my order went straight into the manufacturing queue. I heard they only made 1,200 in the first run and Amazon had no idea Kindle would sell out within hours. There's definitely a pent up demand for carrying around your library in your hand.

    If you have any books you wrote -- published or not -- and want them published for the Kindle, go here to upload your work and set your own price: http://dtp.amazon.com/

  18. Hey, that's interesting, boles.

    My site is a book, and I'm looking at different ways of publishing it.

    I read your post, but what's your view on the practicalities and likely economics ? Can the Radiohead experiment with music publishing teach us something here ?

  19. Hi energetic --

    My Kindle arrived this morning! It is smaller and sleeker than I thought. My review should appear on Monday.

    I think eBooks are a whole new avenue for publication and the Kindle is a fine avenue to explore for getting your book or blog known and sold.

    I would price your book way under the going rate, though, even though Amazon's "cut" of your book price is 35%. Let the power of the low dollar help get you known. On my other blog I discussed this issue today concerning rising scales for book prices:

    http://www.wordpunk.com/2007/11/rising-scale.html

  20. Small Correction:

    Amazon's cut is 65%. The author cut is 35%.

  21. Here is a link to some funny one-liners on Kindle that I couldn't resist posting http://www.90percentofeverything.com/

  22. Boles: now THAT is an interesting number. I'm definitely going to be covering this in my literary gathering; I'll take particular pleasure in pointing it out to the publishers.

  23. rain: Yes, 35% is a gift to authors when we're used to getting around 10% if we're lucky.

    So many "authors" who are publishing their Kindle books are complaining about Amazon's 65% cut -- we who know laugh at them because they obviously have no real experience as published authors.

  24. Here is my Kindle Review and it covers publishing to the Kindle platform, managing content and the curious fact that women especially seem keen on the device:

    http://urbansemiotic.com/2007/12/03/my-kingdom-for-a-kindle-or-two-or-six/

  25. Update:

    Amazon just told me you must send a full RSS feed if you want them to present and promote your blog on the Kindle.

    Most publishers, I was told, send a private, full feed to Amazon using FeedbBurner where you can choose to send a full or truncated feed. Most publishers now use a truncated feed for the general public because of RSS scrapers.

    There's no way to send a private, full RSS feed here from WP.com, right? It's either full or truncated for both public and private use, right?

    TypePad offers a couple of nice things where you can click a box and have a Google sitemap created and you can also re-burn your official blog RSS feed via FeedBurner if you so choose.

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