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Books Privacy Stats

E-Books That Read You 120

Posted by Soulskill
from the they-find-you-hackneyed-and-your-font-is-too-small dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Internet users have sadly grown used to having their every click and scroll measured by advertisers and content providers seeking to squeeze every last ounce of attention out of them. Now, it seems such data gathering is spreading into your favorite novels as well. The NY Times profiles several companies trying to collect data on how people read ebooks. Quoting: 'Scribd is just beginning to analyze the data from its subscribers. Some general insights: The longer a mystery novel is, the more likely readers are to jump to the end to see who done it. People are more likely to finish biographies than business titles, but a chapter of a yoga book is all they need. They speed through romances faster than religious titles, and erotica fastest of all. At Oyster, a top book is What Women Want, promoted as a work that "brings you inside a woman's head so you can learn how to blow her mind." Everyone who starts it finishes it. On the other hand, Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr.'s The Cycles of American History blows no minds: fewer than 1 percent of the readers who start it get to the end. Oyster data shows that readers are 25 percent more likely to finish books that are broken up into shorter chapters. That is an inevitable consequence of people reading in short sessions during the day on an iPhone.'"
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E-Books That Read You

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  • by tomhath (637240) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @05:15PM (#45783535)

    At Oyster, a top book is What Women Want, promoted as a work that "brings you inside a woman's head so you can learn how to blow her mind." Everyone who starts it finishes it. On the other hand, Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr.'s The Cycles of American History blows no minds: fewer than 1 percent of the readers who start it get to the end.

    200 pages of soft core porn are more likely to be read than 500 pages of history. Who knew?

  • by mrbester (200927) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @06:15PM (#45783867) Homepage

    "Everyone who starts it finishes it"

    That's because after every chapter you're hoping the book will keep the tagline promise ("OK, maybe the *next* chapter will tell me what I want to know") only to find at the end that it doesn't.

  • Re:Easy solution (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @07:55PM (#45784439)

    You've completely missed the point of the unix philosophy. The reason for splitting tasks like "Buy a book and read it" into single jobs is so that you can replace the individual parts. You probably have one or two ways to get books on your device: you can buy it from the store, and maybe you can use a desktop application to copy files over, provided they are in the right format.

    By contrast, I can get books from wherever I want, from text files to Amazon to B&N to Project Gutenberg to backwater FTP sites. I can use whatever programs I want to organize these books, whether by file structure, metadata tagging, stored in a database, etc. I can then use whatever programs I feel like to transfer them to my device's storage (if I haven't opted to store them on the device as a master). This is possible because each component of this process was designed to work regardless of whatever other programs it is used together with.

    You can't do that with your device. If there's a part of your "click button, read book" process that fails - for instance, if someone decides that to revoke the "read book" step for copyright reasons - you can't replace the failed component.

  • by Runaway1956 (1322357) on Wednesday December 25, 2013 @09:35PM (#45784957) Homepage Journal

    Fight back with torrents. Calibre doesn't care what format the ebook is in, and it certainly doesn't report back to Amazon or anyone else. To document my reading habits, you'll have to root my machine. To even find out what I read, you'll have to at least get a look at my hard drive.

  • by Chexum (1498) on Thursday December 26, 2013 @06:43AM (#45786817) Homepage
    31 pages. Far from 200. It's practically ending before you realize it. If this is coming from an "eat-all-you-can" monthly subscription ebook store, I would guess more people would go for lighter works to get more out of their money. So the data they tell us is practically useless to predict what is really wanted in a book.

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