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Free E-Books, With a Catch — Advertising 194

Velcroman1 writes "Barnes & Noble may kick off a fresh price war today for digital book readers, with its new Nook news. But the real news in digital publishing is a novel approach to the e-books themselves: Free books — with advertising. The basic idea is to offer publishers another way to reach readers and to give readers the chance to try more books — books that perhaps they wouldn't normally peruse if they had to pay more for them. Initially, Wowio specialized in offering digital versions of comic books and graphic novels, usually formatted as Adobe PDFs. So it was a natural step for the company to offer graphic ads that are inserted in e-books. 'We think we're creating a broader audience for some of these titles,' Wowio's CEO Brian Altounian told me. 'I think folks are going to download more books because they're saving the costs' of having to drive to the store or pay more for them. Would ads stop you from reading?" The new color Nook goes for $249, and comes with a browser, games, Quickoffice, streaming music via Pandora, and an SDK; reader itwbennett links to an analysis of how well it stacks up as a tablet.
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Free E-Books, With a Catch — Advertising

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  • oh boy (Score:4, Funny)

    by Tablizer ( 95088 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @10:49PM (#34033950) Journal

    "It was a dark and stormy beautiful downtown Vegas!"

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better McDonald's... I'm loving it!

    • Re:oh boy (Score:5, Funny)

      by MoonBuggy ( 611105 ) on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @12:51AM (#34034500) Journal

      Cry 'havoc,' and let slip the dogs of war ...only at

      • To Be Or Not To Be...are you feeling blue? Ask your doctor if Cymbalta is right for you

        Seriously if they can use ads to get the price down to the magic $100 number I'll be happy to buy eBooks from B&N. Hell I'd even set up an account for my mom and she could buy all her fantasy and horror from them and she could try out ad supported new authors before deciding which ones she likes. I'm sure it won't be long before the Linux guys hack the thing so I'd have a cheap tablet to play with, and mom could hav

        • The ads are in the ebooks themselves, not the reader. So this won't have any effect on the price of the hardware.
      • Ye are funny but the summary said graphics ads, probably similar to the ads on Hulu right now.

        I would happily take a book with ads, especially if it's free. Since my money supply is finite, any opportunity I have not to spend that money is a good one. And it's not as if you have to pay attention to the ad..... oftentimes when hulu plays ads, I do something else during that minute.

  • There is no price point set for the nook yet. The $249 was the "widely speculated" price, not based on anything but guesses at this point.
  • It'd be one thing if they just stuck a random graphic here and there. But I expect that the trend would go in the same direction as the multi-page web article. Namely, ads in between the pages that you can't skip. Can you imagine how annoying that would make your book? "I've discovered the identity of the murderer. His name is....." "...and now a word from our sponsor." Brings to mind archaic memories of old radio shows where you really had no choice. I suppose if it's still just another page, you c
    • by the_humeister ( 922869 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:11PM (#34034058)

      I suppose now is a good time as any to mention Project Gutenber [].

      • by niftydude ( 1745144 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:23PM (#34034116)
        Project Gutenberg is excellent - but if we extrapolate the current rate of copyright expansion, books published this century may never enter the public domain.
        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          by BrokenHalo ( 565198 )
          True - but for the moment, at least, one can occasionally find texts for which copyright has been snatched by US publishing pirates by looking at Gutenberg sites under different jurisdictions. A case in point is Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four: copyright to Rosenblum in the US until at least 2044, but public domain in Australia (and probably Canada).
          • Okay, that really confuses me. If a British novel is copyrighted in the United States, but publicly available in Australia, what are the legal boundaries? Is it legal to download it in the United States, as long as the uploader is in Australia? If not, then is it legal to purchase a copy of 1984 in Australia (where the copyright holder does not receive any royalties) and then transport it to the United States? ("I read it on the flight, Mr. Customs Agent!")

            • Well I'm guessing that since it's about copyright as long as you create no copies within the united states you're good.
              but then that's applying logic which laywers don't like doing.

              So my guess is that if you ask a major copyright holder they'll tell you that anything up to and including mentioning that the work is out of copyright elsewhere is illegal and they'll happily push to try to get you punished.

        • by RMH101 ( 636144 ) on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @05:00AM (#34035394)
          Gutenberg's great, but what we need is e-lending from Libraries. In the UK, this is sort of possible via Overdrive - if you have an "approved" device then you can borrow eBooks from UK libraries. For some reason they seem to be keeping this a secret despite having done it in some form since 2004.
          Only works on some devices, like the Sony readers.
          To me, this is the killer app and I'd buy an eReader that allowed easy borrowing (i.e. time-expired downloads ) of current fiction in a heartbeat...
          • "Lending" digital works really completes the circle of absurdity. It's like a metaphor taken way, way too far.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by Methuseus ( 468642 )

            This is possible in many places in the US. I can "borrow" ebooks from multiple libraries in the area, some of them expiring on a certain date, not sure if there's any other scheme. This works with my nook, as well as the Sony readers, and others like those Borders sells. I don't believe they work with the Kindle, but the Kindle 3 might change that from what I read.

            I don't know how it works in the UK, of course.

        • by mcgrew ( 92797 ) *

          Project Gutenberg, alas, only has public domain works afaik. However, there are other sources of free, legal, copyrighted books online. Cory Doctorow explains in Content [] why he posts all his books online:

          • Many writers have tried free e-book releases to tie in with the print release of their works. To the best of my knowledge, every writer who's tried this has repeated the experiment with future works, suggesting a high degree of satisfaction with the outcomes
          • A writer friend of mine had his first novel come
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ratinox ( 582104 ) [] and [] are also excellent sources of free ebooks, providing published, unpublished and public domain titles.

        FWIW, personally I abhor ads and would seek to locate an ad-free copy of a given book before purchasing an ad-embedded copy.
    • by yukk ( 638002 )
      While I haven't actually been able to find a free book on this service I have been getting "free ad-sponsored" music from Guvera [] and all they make you do is visit a sponsored playlist page within their site and the sponsor pays for your unencumbered MP3 music. The mp3s have no ads or DRM.
      Apparently this model is working for music so hopefully with books it won't be too much worse.

      On the other hand:

      "I've discovered the identity of the murderer. His name is....." "...and now a word from our sponsor."

      Sounds a lot like watching TV these days.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by plopez ( 54068 )

      Damn... I can't imagine that. It's just like watching TV and having to sit through an ad. Something I don't do ever since I longer have a TV. Being forced to watch ads is becoming more of an alien concept to me. On the web I never read popups, popunders or sit through those ads they want you to see before reading. Once again they are reinventing the wheel, and remind me why I have abandoned TV.

      The simpler and sources forums are usually the best, and I begrudge a device which I pay (or paid) for being hijac

    • Or the book could dynamically update product placement... depending on how fast advertisers change, your hero could be spending more time being indecisive about his favorite coffee shop than getting around to dealing with the plot.
    • I was thinking it would be better to have a page, or pages, at the beginning and/or end. My fear was the thimble effect like sites that have a small square in the middle with the content your wanting surrounded by blinking flashing and rolling ads. I guess interruptive ads every so many pages would be the eventual goal of advertisers wouldn't it. Oh well, even if the books and device were free l'd say no thanks.

  • Great. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ScrewMaster ( 602015 ) * on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @10:55PM (#34033976)
    So, is the idea to turn novels, anthologies and reference works into magazines?

    • by c0lo ( 1497653 )

      So, is the idea to turn novels, anthologies and reference works into magazines? Brilliant!

      Wait until scientific papers will be the same. I can already see:

      • "Goldbach theorem demonstration" [] proudly brought to you by Coca Cola
      • "Heart diseases correlate weaker with regular tobacco smoking than with a fast-food diet" proudly brought to you by Reynolds.

        Errr... hang on...
      • Re:Great. (Score:5, Insightful)

        by petermgreen ( 876956 ) <[ten.knil01p] [ta] [hsawgulp]> on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @07:02AM (#34035718) Homepage

        heh, i'd preffer it to the current model where the only people who can access scientific literature are those in academia (who have access to most journals though bulk agreements with thier university) or those prepared to pay substantial subscriptions or per-paper fees.

        In my experiance you don't really know if a paper will be useful/interesting until you have read a fair chunk of it. If you were paying by the paper you could easilly run up a bill of hundreds of pounds in a few hours of checking through papers to see which were relavent. That is a lot of money if you are just reading for interest or other noncommercial purposes.

        So the general public is effectively excluded from reading the primary sources of our knowlage.

        • Oh, my kingdom for mod points. You have mentioned one of my pet peeves, and indeed, I have spent thousands of dollars on irrelevant papers from some of these sites. Alas, there is no option.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by Idiomatick ( 976696 )
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by metlin ( 258108 )

      Well, it would depend on what kind of books (and readers) you're talking about, right?

      Your average reader of Clive Cussler and Twilight probably wouldn't care - and may even enjoy it. For them, reading is probably like watching TV or something. On the other hand, folks who read something a little substantial would probably care. A lot.

      I can almost see someone advertising Glenn Beck and Palin to a Chomsky or Satre reader.

      • Re:Great. (Score:4, Insightful)

        by ScrewMaster ( 602015 ) * on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:46PM (#34034226)

        On the other hand, folks who read something a little substantial would probably care. A lot.

        Thereby providing a rationale for further monetization: well, if you don't want ads you need to pay for the privilege, because, you know, you're costing us money by not directing your gray matter to absorb our advertising. This on top of whatever you paid for this "book" in the first place. Greed knows no bounds, and book publishers are among the most vampiric operations in our society.

        It always amazes me how the business mind works. Like the phone company charging you for the service of not listing your phone number. Eventually, it becomes income to which they feel entitled.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Mitreya ( 579078 )
          It always amazes me how the business mind works. Like the phone company charging you for the service of not listing your phone number. Eventually, it becomes income to which they feel entitled.

          It always amazes me when people are looking for ethical or exotic behavioral explanation behind buisness decisions. The buisness mind works just fine. The phone company charges you for the services of _not_ listing your phone number because they essentially sell the access to your phone number by publishing phone

          • Re:Great. (Score:5, Insightful)

            by cherokee158 ( 701472 ) on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @06:49AM (#34035688)

            It always amazes me when people are looking for ethical or exotic behavioral explanation behind buisness decisions.

            It saddens me that so many people think that by enshrining a human activity as 'business' automatically excuses unethical behavior. Business is a human activity, and no human activity should be exempt from human virtue. If morality is optional, then it is largely meaningless, and I might as well shoot you and take your money.

  • by zippthorne ( 748122 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @10:58PM (#34033996) Journal

    Gah. Looks like I'll be switching to kindle or sony when I get tired of my current reader. Hopefully I'm wrong about the jump to the backlit bandwagon, but it sure looks like they're trying to be an iPad, only less useful.

    Advertising.. sure, why not. no-money books will be good for everyone. But why does the choice have to be between way-overpriced in terms of money, and overpriced in terms of time - advertisements. Why not just price the books at what they're really worth, and make it up in volume. Especially as the marginal cost of an eBook is almost entirely licensing. If eBooks couldn't be shared or copied, but were all between $1 to $3...

    • Re:DO NOT WANT! (Score:5, Interesting)

      by molnarcs ( 675885 ) <csabamolnar@gPOL ... om minus painter> on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:35PM (#34034172) Homepage Journal
      Exactly my thoughts here [] - when it comes to price. I wrote that review specifically for Vietnamese students (tried to simplify the language as well as the issues I touch upon). The prices set by the publishers for the digital versions is just fucking ridiculous. The average salary around here is $300/month, but even if that was not the case, 13-15$ for a shitty novel by Danielle Steel? WTF?? Give me out of copyright classics for $1 (already freely available, but I would pay for the convenience of a one stop shop), $2-3 for contemporaries, $5 at most for real gems - and I wouldn't bother with piracy. Of course I know the reason for these (probably don't want to compete with their own established traditional distribution chains, ie dead tree book business), but that's besides the point.

      Also, the stuff I wrote about e-ink vs. LCD - I know that many would find no difference between the two technologies, in other words, some people can read just fine on an LCD. I'm not one of them. For me, e-ink is far more pleasant to look at. Moreover, I started to go out for reading to breath a bit of fresh air and just be outside - sitting on the terrace of a cafe, in a park, on the beach beneath a shade... and that's where e-ink readers really shine and LCDs, including the iPAD, sucks balls. Indoors, in dim light/no light LCDs have an advantage, but I still find it better to use my Sony Reader with a lamp than reading on a screen with backlight.

      • You may well already know about it, but Project Gutenberg [] is an excellent 'one stop shop' for out of copyright literature. Combine that with online library access and it becomes pretty easy to keep an eBook reader (legally) filled without paying to do so.

        That said, I quite agree with you that current eBook pricing is too high, and I think there's a lot of room for improvement in the market.

    • The whole thing that makes eReaders so brilliant is the reflective screen. I'm fine with backlit screens, but for laptops and desktops. For reader things, a reflective screen is the way to go not only for battery life but for all purpose readability as well. The Kindle really does look "like paper" they aren't kidding. That is what makes it nice.

  • only a matter of time. now if they could just get the hardware costs down a bit.

    i really like regular books over staring at a screen, but even i might be tempted to try an e-reader if the price was right.

    • by Barny ( 103770 )

      Nope, you will drag me away from my collection of dead trees when I am a cold dead corpse.

      Speaking of which, I am down to only a few books in my buffer, time to buy some more :)

  • meh (Score:2, Interesting)

    by jhoegl ( 638955 )
    ~$250 for a color e-book?

    What am I gunna do with it, read "Go dog, go" and "wheres waldo"?

    For $250, there better be a happy ending, and I dont mean a kids happy ending, I mean a massage parlor happy ending
    Dont spend your money on crap, the Dollar is still worth something!
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by T Murphy ( 1054674 )
      But the color adds so much to the experience- it allows my pages to age and yellow like a real book! Not to mention how it should be able to display far more realistic coffee stains...
  • The Nook Color is slow painfully slow it makes me embarrassed for Barnes and Noble. Horrendous scrolling and zooming and touch responsiveness. Just horrendous.

  • Good Grief (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sjames ( 1099 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:06PM (#34034036) Homepage Journal

    Are we not all surrounded with enough ads yet? About the only place they're not yet is tattooed on the inside of our eyelids.

    To the advertisers: STFU already!

    • Re:Good Grief (Score:4, Insightful)

      by DeadPixels ( 1391907 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:30PM (#34034150)
      I don't know about other people, but if an ad is particularly annoying, I make a note to remember that company so as not to buy their products. Granted, it works the other way as well; if I see a particularly unobtrusive form of advertising or hear about a company doing something good, I make a point to check out their products and suggest them to friends. Word of mouth for me is much more effective than annoying popups and obtrusive, pushy ads. Those just make me hate you.
      • by sjames ( 1099 )

        Same here. It's not advertising itself I object to, it's the excess of it. I also appreciate if they actually entertain. Of course, I have also seen attempts to entertain that fall so flat they become annoying.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by MoonBuggy ( 611105 )

        Quite agreed. Unfortunately, many people are morons, and will thus respond to adverts of that type. Not only will they respond, their aforementioned idiocy makes them more likely to be talked into buying inferior, overpriced products that they quite possibly don't even need.

        What surprises me more is not the bad adverts, but just how much our economy is based on advertising. TV, newspapers, sports & the majority of the internet all basically run on the assumption that the marketing is actually working. T

    • I just want the advertisers to cut out the middle men and pay me to see their ads. I will happily wallpaper my hovel with their billboard ads if I get paid for it. Stickers on the shaving mirror, whatever. Who knows, if I save up the advertising money, one day I might buy one of their products.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by noidentity ( 188756 )
      To the buyers: stop buying things with ads already!
  • Doesn't Penguin paperback books hold a patent on advertising inside novels?
  • Wowio? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Cidolfas ( 1358603 ) on Tuesday October 26, 2010 @11:33PM (#34034166)
    The same Wowio who managed to not pay the webcomic authors whose work they were selling?
    • by Barny ( 103770 )

      Yup, the same in fact that limited their sales to US/Canada and screwed the few they did pay out of a large chunk of their reader base.

  • Ads would stop me from acquiring materials from that source.
  • I don't know.. I hate advertising too, but think about it.. all the books I could read, legally free, and all I have to do is skip a few pages every now and then? This doesn't sound like a bad deal at all. Just like reading magazines, in fact, which everyone's already pretty accustomed to. If this means more books for everyone, bring it on!

    Speaking of magazines, it only makes sense that mags would eventually start encroaching on the ebook platform. Heck, the fact that I currently can't read magazines on

    • I *will not* pay for eBooks that are any more DRM encumbered than a PDF with a password. But then, I *like* reading actual books.
      • I think most people probably prefer paper for the actual reading experience (I know I do), but ereaders do have their advantages - the combination of a vast array of free classic content, the ability to download instantly from both local and international libraries and have the books 'return' themselves automatically, and, perhaps most importantly, the ability to carry a whole collection in a small, light unit was enough to convince me to get one. Considering what I'd end up spending even on out of copyrigh

        • The problem for me is that the prices they want are way too high for a book you don't own. Now, if they were just a few bucks, I'd buy hundreds of them maybe.
  • by Dyinobal ( 1427207 ) on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @12:01AM (#34034304)
    I know I found Robin Hobb's Assassin's apprentice and it's subsequent trilogies after it was put up for free on the publishers website. So for giving me 1 free book I bought 8 more and am still reading her latest stuff to come out since then. If I'd not of seen that free book I'd of never bought the rest.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Barny ( 103770 )

      Great series, I found them by referrals from friends. You know, switching off the computer, getting outside and, uh, talking to people :)

      We regularly catch up and swap books around so that we all have something new and a little different to read.

      Sometimes the best answers to these sorts of problems, isn't to make another computer solution.

  • No. Just no. (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I read books to escape the monotony of real life. I do NOT want to be forcibly reminded of the outside world while trying to lose myself in a novel. So, in short, NO THANKS. I'd rather pay for my books.

  • Awesome! Can somebody link me to AdBlock for Nook?

  • If you look at the spec's, it claims "up to" an 8 hour battery life with airplane mode, which is drastically shorter than current eInk based technology (I routinely get 25-30 hours of reading out of a nook easily with airplane mode on).

    It is also backlit, which contributes to insomnia for those who read late at night or in bed (see La Times []).

    I'd love to see a color, eInk based technology, but if I wanted a tablet instead of a ebook reader, I'd buy one. They both have their places, but LCD screens are not

  • Apparently, a week or two back, an ad agency contacted Neil Gaiman to see if they could get product placement in his next novel. He was aghast in the way that only mild-mannered, scary trousers [] authors can pull off.
  • Android (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Enderandrew ( 866215 ) <> on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @12:27AM (#34034438) Homepage Journal

    Why block the Android market? If I could install Android apps, then it would be a cheap tablet and I'd gladly buy it. Without Android market, it is a one-off gadget and overpriced. Why intentionally limit a feature that would otherwise be a selling point?

  • by Reziac ( 43301 ) * on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @12:58AM (#34034534) Homepage Journal

    You young whippersnappers wouldn't remember this, but back in the Olden Days most deadtree books contained advertising. Paperbacks typically had a glossy insert in the middle (most often a cigarette ad), and hardbacks had several pages of ads in the back, usually something at least vaguely relevant to the book's content, and also sometimes ads for other books (and not only from that book's publisher).

    It occurs to me that if ads were placed at the end of the ebook (much as ads in hardbacks used to be at the back of the book) there's incentive to improve content, to get the average reader to finish the book and see the ads.

    • Meanwhile there are some new really interesting concepts in the ebook world, like free online reading coupled with new approaches to low-overhead publishing. See for example Libertary,, some more varied and interesting books and less hype. Libertary's developing a low-overhead publishing model that uses free online reading to generate interest in books as well as a bit more highly featured free reading model. Or, if you have good Chinese, check out, probably the larg
      • by Reziac ( 43301 ) *

        All to the good. Thanks for the references. Goes to show there's more than one way to do ebooks.

      • Meanwhile there are some new really interesting concepts in the ebook world, like free online reading

        We used to call that a library; B&N and Borders extended it by putting Starbucks coffee companies and chairs in the store where you can read anything for free off the shelves.

        coupled with new approaches to low-overhead publishing.

        Don Lancaster, back in the Apple ][ days, extolled the virtues of desktop publishing on an on demand basis; complete with laser printer and thermal or ring binding.

        So there actually is some really interesting stuff going on in the free books field.

        There is, but ebooks expanded the market for older ideas and eased distribution. As with much technology, it has enabled a broader application of an old idea.

    • I have seen a few related ads in books, but I was thinking more generally: the "free with loads of ads" concept is not new or unique. :)

    • I'm all for ads in ebooks, provided that I can read the ebook on an open ebook reader where I've installed my choice of adblocker.

      The problem I see is that advertisers naturally want to prevent people from filtering out the ads automatically, and the only realistic way to do that is to lock down the hardware so that people can't easily run their own OS and preferred software. And that approach is generally bad for open source.

      If publishers expect to distribute free ebooks with ads embedded in them, they

      • by Reziac ( 43301 ) *

        Actually you could strip the ads out of deadtree books, all it took was 5 seconds with a scissor or razor blade, and halfway-fair aim. (When you see an old book with a bunch of the last few pages missing, that's probably what happened.)

        But the real point was that other than noticing they were there, you weren't forced to view them. Nothing prevented you from turning the page and totally ignoring them, or never going that far in the first place. (Tho the insert in paperbacks was a bit obnoxious because it ma

    • Uhm, how come? Browsing through my book shelves, I can't think of ANY book with advertising other than excerpts/cover photos of other books at the end. Neither for books from the 19th century which I have just a couple, not those from 21th. Cigarette inserts? Where? Is the situation on the left side of the pond that much worse than here?

  • Books should be free if they're in e-format. Trying to charge for them when they can be distributed for free is cheesy. This is Cheetos cheesy, with one crunch you can't get enough, so stick a cheetah in your mouth. If books were free, education would be cheaper. I'm talking as cheap as Natural Light Beer. A cheaper education would mean more people would be educated. They'd be educated more than Leap Frog ever did with all their proprietary hardware. Look we got the hardware, because Intel, AMD and A
  • Direct Sponsorship (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SpectreHiro ( 961765 ) on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @01:41AM (#34034670) Homepage

    It seems most folks here are pretty disgusted at the idea of advertising in books, but how would you feel about direct corporate sponsorships conducted in a tasteful manner? Let's say your favorite sci-fi author's books were all released as Intel Presents or AMD Presents, similar to the old anthology shows from the '50s & '60s such as The Alcoa Hour, Kraft Television Theater, and the Westinghouse Desilu Playhouse; would that inspire the same level of disgust?

    I'm very interested in finding a way to distribute fiction for free without DRM, thus maximizing the value to readers, while at the same time raising some profit for the writer. Advertising seems to be the optimal way to get it done. The other leading contender would be the Ransom Model, but that has some inherent weaknesses that are rather difficult to work around. If you have other ideas, I'm absolutely all ears.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by charleylc ( 928180 )
      Your idea has merit. It's much better than the more invasive ads that take up space and cause the reader to shift away from reading to looking at the ad because it just flashed or changed. I personally detest ads. The constant bombardment of ads for every imaginable product is annoying to say the least. Google has done a pretty decent job with the text ads that take up little space and are non-flashing. However, I much rather pay for a book than to have to suffer through advertising. Even watching Hulu
  • Unlike "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo". That "novel" (since it was really just one long advertisement) was full of product placements, including an advertisement for a Swedish word processing package - complete with URL and price.

    At least this way, when I'm blasted with advertisements, I won't have paid for the experience.

  • Leela: Didn't you have ads in the 20th century?
    Fry: Well sure, but not in our dreams. Only on TV and radio. And in magazines. And movies. And at ball games and on buses and milk cartons and t-shirts and written on the sky. But not in dreams. No siree!

  • I haven't even seen the first one, and I already want AdBlock. Heck, I want AdBlock for my whole life.

    Sure, the ads aren't intrusive...yet. If ads are not intrusive, the advertisers are not getting their money's worth, and they will demand that the ads become intrusive. Look at other media. Commercials DVDs now have unskippable ads at the start - horrible. Ads in web pages also started out pretty harmless. Now, without AdBlock, many sites are practically unusable.

  • I wonder if this version of the nook will delete all of your non Barnes & Noble [] books too?

  • ..and I'll stick by my nice, ad-free, bullshit-free printed books, that need only my eyes and some light to read, that can be read as many times and as often as I want, that I can loan out to as many people as often as I like, that can't be altered or erased after I've purchased it (short of being physically destroyed, anyway).
    But by all means, please do use your e-book readers for your textbooks, newspapers, magazines, PDF files, and all other otherwise printed matter than before too long ends up in the re
  • Is is only a matter of time before ads will be removed by some nice piece of software that's available for free download. Just as with DRM "protection".
  • by voss ( 52565 ) on Wednesday October 27, 2010 @09:14AM (#34036394)

    If the ads added value to the book.

    Imagine a science fiction book with ads for science fiction magazine or a book about learning about
      computers that came with ads for newegg. Technology doesnt have to suck just because it can.

Competence, like truth, beauty, and contact lenses, is in the eye of the beholder. -- Dr. Laurence J. Peter