Round up #21: Kindle dock, weird pre-order messages, nook news

Round up #21: Kindle dock, weird pre-order messages, nook news

That book we delivered to you last year will be delayed

This is a strange one, but I’ve read about it from several people on the Amazon Kindle community.

People are getting e-mails from Amazon apologizing in delays or other issues with pre-orders…despite having already gotten the book.  The original poster says the books were delivered in February 2008 (more than two years ago) and that the order numbers are the same.  You can read some comments in

this thread

Mistakes occur in every human enterprise, pretty much, but (and I’m not sure why) my geeky sense is tingling on this one.  I don’t think we’ll hear anything more about this, but even though pre-orders are clearly complicated by the missing Penguins, this seems odd.  Why would a book revert to pre-order status?  One possibility: the books are being re-entered with the Agency Model shift.  They appear to have the same ASINs (Amazon Standard Identification Numbers).  Interestingly, a couple of these are Penguin books…does this presage the return of the Penguins?  Don’t know, but it’s a possibility.

What’s up, dock?

Here’s an interesting little product that’s popped up recently:

Charging Dock Cradle for Kindle 2

Basically, you would set your Kindle in a vertical holder to charge it.  Now, it’s reasonable to be concerned about a using a third party charger for most electronics, but I wouldn’t be too worried about this personally.  First, the Kindles are universal voltage, so I would think they are pretty safe with non-standard chargers.  Second, it’s still a USB charger…my guess (and that’s all it is) is that this is safe.

It looks nice, and it’s only $5.  Oh, that’s marked down from $60.  🙂  Presumably, they have to charge somebody $60 for that to be legal…sort of makes you feel sad for that guy, doesn’t it?  😉

nook news

If you go into a Barnes & Noble brick and mortar store and get a nook (sic), they’ll gift-wrap it for you for free.  🙂  By the way, I’m now confused…they’ve been writing nook in all small letters, but now they’ve started sometimes doing it all capitals: NOOK, like they are yelling at you.  Um, guys…it’s called sentence case: just the first letter gets capitalized, like this: Nook.  😉

Back to the gift-wrapping…I hope they are clever enough to do what we used to do during the holidays and pre-wrap a bunch of them.  That made things so much faster and easier…we would wrap them before the store opened.  If you over-wrapped, it was easy enough to unwrap them afterwards.

As you know, I talk about other EBRs (E-Book Readers) than the Kindle, despite the title of the blog.  I have a very techie co-worker who is happy with a nook…um…NOOK…oh, never mind.  😉   They’ve recently enhanced them considerably, adding web-browsing in the little LCD screen, and you can play chess against them now. 

There was also a recent story that suggested that more E Ink screens were being used for nooks than Kindles.  That got reported by some people as nooks outselling Kindles.  It didn’t mean that at all, of course, although it doesn’t rule it out.  It meant that Barnes & Noble had ordered more.

When you sell through brick and mortars, you need the physical objects to be right there on site.  People need to walk out the door with them, and if you don’t have one, you could easily lose the sale.

When you sell them on-line, you can have them stored in a warehouse somewhere, and shipped from there.  You can also have them not immediately available, as long as your supply and delivery cycle isn’t more than a few days, typically. 

My guess is that B&N ordered up for Mothers’/Fathers’ Day. 

Is reading gender-based?

This is an interesting, but bizarre, article by Jason Pinter on the Huffington Post:

Why Men Don’t Read: How Publishing is Alienating Half the Population

It includes this:

“… if you’ve worked in publishing, you’ve heard the tired old maxim: Men Don’t Read.”

 Is that really a maxim?  It’s certainly not one we had in the bookstore end of it.

There are studies about who reads what and who buys what.  For example, I would guess it’s statistically accurate that more women read Harlequin romances than men do.  It’s therefore not unreasonable that the publisher might market in ways that might appeal to women more.

However, when you look at bestsellers over time, I don’t think they stereotypically fall into what people think women read.  Tom Clancy, horror novels (that aren’t romance)…why, I remember when people thought science fiction was mostly a “fanboys”‘ game (although we didn’t use that term at the time).

I think that it might skew the numbers because women may be more likely to do the actual shopping.  I’m sure that has become less true over time as well…when women were more likely to be home during the day (and that may still be true, I don’t know), they were more likely to be out and about.  They might have been buying the books in the house, but that didn’t necessarily mean they were the ones reading them.   I’m sure a lot of women have bought Remo Williams books…and some of them were reading them.  🙂

Pinter also suggests that the ads for EBRs are geared towards women.  Hmph.  Don’t know about that…that first Kindle ad.  Is that geared towards women?  Why?  Is it because a woman is the one using the Kindle?  Is it because its imaginative?  It has violent imagery…does that make it geared towards men?

That’s all stereotyping (which isn’t always wrong, of course).

I thought one of the great analyses years ago about why men tended to like action movies and women didn’t was that men were happy with a resolution where somebody killed somebody else, and women tended to want an ending where everybody was happy.  You know, she’d rather have Frank Nitti become friends with Elliot Ness, and The Joker see the error of his ways.  I also thought there was an interesting idea about the gender split on The Three Stooges.  Men tend to see the Stooges as funnier than women do.  The idea I’ve heard on that one is that men have more experience with play-fighting, and know that what is happening in the Stooges is no more real than what happens in a cartoon…so they don’t feel a real sense of danger. 

Interesting ideas…you may have noticed I don’t tend to identify gender in my writing at all.  I refer to my Significant Other, for example.  I do that to make it fair…some Kindleers met my SO at the first Kindle & Koffee day, and know.  Same thing with my offspring…I don’t identify gender there, and I don’t usually do it with myself, either.  I know, a lot of you think that’s silly…but I figured I owed you something a little personal since I had a longer gap than usual between posts.  People were even worried about me, which was nice.  🙂  Just a really busy time lately, and that one post with the price ranges took up a lot of time so I didn’t get ahead. 

I’ll try not to do that again…I’m going to write ahead to cover Mothers’ Day, for example…or should that be Guardians’ Day? 😉

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog.

2 Responses to “Round up #21: Kindle dock, weird pre-order messages, nook news”

  1. alan church Says:

    I have read several times in recent years that women read the vast majority of literary fiction in the US, about 80% as I recall.

    • bufocalvin Says:

      Thanks for writing, Alan!

      Yes, I’ve read some stats like that as well. I just don’t buy that “men don’t read”. I think there may be some confusion on that with: who buys the books; and men perhaps not being as willing to answer surveys. 🙂 That’s just speculation, though.

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