4 Replies Latest reply on Mar 9, 2012 5:16 PM by Alex Garcia

    some ebooks more expensive than regular books?

      Hi, I'm new here and just got a Nook about a week ago. I really like it...but I've noticed that a few ebooks I've wanted to buy recently actually cost more than the regular book. How is this possible? It doesn't seem right. Here is a specific example (The Devil and Sherlock Holmes by David Grann): http://search.barnesandnoble.com/The-Devil-and-Sherlock-Holmes/David-Grann/e/9780385533164/?itm=1 Anyone have any insight? Rob_NY
        • Re: some ebooks more expensive than regular books?
          ABthree

           


          Rob_NY wrote:
          Hi, I'm new here and just got a Nook about a week ago. I really like it...but I've noticed that a few ebooks I've wanted to buy recently actually cost more than the regular book. How is this possible? It doesn't seem right. Here is a specific example (The Devil and Sherlock Holmes by David Grann): http://search.barnesandnoble.com/The-Devil-and-Sherlock-Holmes/David-Grann/e/9780385533164/?itm=1 Anyone have any insight? Rob_NY

           

           

          Good catch, Rob!

           

          Some are just pricing anomalies.  In those cases, bringing them to the attention of B&N sometimes helps, especially if you can identify a lower eBook price elsewhere.  Most of it, though is a very difficult situation the market is experiencing right now.

           

          As of April 1, five of the six biggest publishers colluded with Apple to monopolize pricing and force it on Amazon, B&N and all the other resellers.  You can find all the gory details by doing a search of the boards on "Agency Five", "Agency 5", "Agency Model" or "Agency Pricing".  Since then, the Agency 5 have been doing what monopolists do:  experimenting with pricing to see how much the buying public will put up with, and manipulating eBook pricing to encourage or discourage consumers in choosing eBooks as compared with DTBs ("dead tree books").

           

          The poster children for this manipulation are, with rich irony, the works of Ayn Rand.  Before April 1, Atlas Shrugged as an eBook was selling for $9.99.  After April 1, Penguin hiked the eBook price up to $27.00 -- while the hardcover was selling for less.  As of today, the eBook is $18.99. and the paperback is $18.00.

           

          We're still in early days on this, so it pays to stay sharp. :smileyhappy:

          • Re: some ebooks more expensive than regular books?

            I just came looking for this topic (I don't read the forum anymore) because I was considering buying Stephanie Meyer's Twilight ebooks.

             

            Unfortunately, all four of them are cheaper to purchase as DTBs. Likewise Thomas E. Sniegoski's Where Angels Fear to Tread.

             

            I wouldn't be surprised to learn that all of them are fixed by agency model publishers.  Regardless of who is at fault, I will pass them by (both DTB and eBook) until I see that the physical object is no cheaper than the intangible one.

             

              • Re: some ebooks more expensive than regular books?
                bklvr896

                 


                JRenshaw wrote:

                I just came looking for this topic (I don't read the forum anymore) because I was considering buying Stephanie Meyer's Twilight ebooks.

                 

                Unfortunately, all four of them are cheaper to purchase as DTBs. Likewise Thomas E. Sniegoski's Where Angels Fear to Tread.

                 

                I wouldn't be surprised to learn that all of them are fixed by agency model publishers.  Regardless of who is at fault, I will pass them by (both DTB and eBook) until I see that the physical object is no cheaper than the intangible one.

                 


                 

                 

                While I agree with you that eBooks should be at least somewhat cheaper that DTBs, I don't necessarily agree with the tangible vs intangible argument.  The value in a book, as with music, is the intangible part, it's the story (or the music).  How much am I willing to pay to read the story.  

                 

                The format, be it DTB or digital, isn't the driving force in the costs.  There have been many posts here that have cited articles and information, that the actual cost of printing and distributing a DTB isn't the significant portion, in some cases, less than 10-15% of the cost of the book.

                 

                For me, the rationale I have concerning pricing is that I have less rights with the digital book.  I cannot lend it (except in some cases and only once) to someone, I can't give it away or donate it.  If I had the freedom to do any of these things with my eBooks, I would be more willing to spend the money on some books that currently I will not, simply because of that.  My price point would be higher than it is now.


                But, if the DTB is cheaper than the eBook and it is something I truly want to read, I'm not going to deny myself that pleasure, I may just decide to purchase the DTB instead.

                 

                Personally, I think this will work itself out in a year or so, but prices may never be where we "want" them.  In fact, one thing I've noticed as I've paid much more attention to the price of the book since I got my Nook, is that it appears that even DTBs have gone up in price in some situations.  I see more paperbacks at $8.99-9.99 than I did a year ago.

                 

                It just seems as the focus is on the tangible portion of the book, when to me, the real value in a book is the intangible part, the story. 

              • Re: some ebooks more expensive than regular books?
                Alex Garcia
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