Author Topic: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?  (Read 6677 times)  

Offline nomesque

  • Status: Arthur C Clarke
  • *****
  • Posts: 2107
  • Gender: Female
  • Macleay Island, Australia
    • View Profile
    • Deadish Online
Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
« Reply #50 on: June 19, 2018, 04:19:13 pm »
There's one huge difference between boxed sets and standard stuffing tactics, as far as I'm aware (hey, correct me if I'm wrong):

TABLE OF CONTENTS

If a ToC is set up correctly, then readers can open a boxed set/omnibus, go to the menu, tap Go To... and pick which book (and chapter, I guess) to start with. No bogus page-reads.

This is why Amazon's starting to require a proper ToC in books, especially books with 'bonus content'. Hopefully they'll extend this requirement to all Kindle books, because as a reader I hate, with a fiery passion, not being able to simply swipe up or down to change the chapter I'm in. A lot of big traditional publishers have been stuffing this up for years (because hey, too busy OCRing the back catalogues to bother with quality control), AND it's a book-stuffer's ideal tactic.

KBoards.com

  • Advertisement
  • ***

    Offline Ava Glass

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 484
    • Gender: Female
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #51 on: June 19, 2018, 05:10:37 pm »
    There's one huge difference between boxed sets and standard stuffing tactics, as far as I'm aware (hey, correct me if I'm wrong):

    TABLE OF CONTENTS

    If a ToC is set up correctly, then readers can open a boxed set/omnibus, go to the menu, tap Go To... and pick which book (and chapter, I guess) to start with. No bogus page-reads.

    This is why Amazon's starting to require a proper ToC in books, especially books with 'bonus content'. Hopefully they'll extend this requirement to all Kindle books, because as a reader I hate, with a fiery passion, not being able to simply swipe up or down to change the chapter I'm in. A lot of big traditional publishers have been stuffing this up for years (because hey, too busy OCRing the back catalogues to bother with quality control), AND it's a book-stuffer's ideal tactic.

    Last time I checked, this was only true on some devices, not all.

    Offline nomesque

    • Status: Arthur C Clarke
    • *****
    • Posts: 2107
    • Gender: Female
    • Macleay Island, Australia
      • View Profile
      • Deadish Online
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #52 on: June 19, 2018, 05:14:36 pm »
    Last time I checked, this was only true on some devices, not all.

    Interesting! I haven't come across this before. Which devices does the ToC not work on?

    Offline Ava Glass

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 484
    • Gender: Female
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #53 on: June 19, 2018, 05:19:16 pm »
    Interesting! I haven't come across this before. Which devices does the ToC not work on?

    Has anyone tested the PC and Cloud readers recently? Those were the ones cited as still counting skipped pages when tested after KENPC 3.0 came out. They've been updated since then though.

    Offline OnlyTheGrotesqueKnow

    • Status: Lewis Carroll
    • **
    • Posts: 136
    • Gender: Male
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #54 on: June 19, 2018, 05:24:24 pm »
    Below is why I don't think this either would work or is even a good plan.

    Book stuffing is against the rules. Fact.
    Scammers have existed since the inception of Amazon. Fact.
    Every time the system changes they find new ways to make a buck. Fact.
    Legit authors who use Box Sets will be hurt by this. Fact.
    Legit authors of long books will be hurt by these rules.  Fact.
    Open market's do better than closed in systems that are overly regulated. Fact.
    The readers like Box Sets. Fact.
    Going against your customers is not how you expand a business. Fact.

    The argument that more rules is somehow going to make the scammers go away is based on no observable facts. Every time KU has changed the scammers have adapted. The ones that have born the pain of the rule's are the innocent authors that many here are asking to suffer for them. Sorry but I've played that game, it ends with me on the alter bleeding while the rich are feasting.

    You want the scammers to go away? Lobby Amazon to enforce it's rules.
    Want Box Sets pulled off KU? Convince readers to stop buying them and authors will stop doing it.

    Finally this is absolutely pointless. Amazon will never pull Box Sets or take them out of KU. Because Amazon is all about the readers. You'd be better off fighting for Amazon to enforce their rules than trying to get them to create more. But hey, being an author of long stories I certainly learned who has my back, and that's never not illuminating.
    To be broken is to be singularly beautiful. Only the shattered are unique in a world of plastic. Scars are the tribal marks of the forgotten, they are how we know our own.

    Offline Ava Glass

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 484
    • Gender: Female
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #55 on: June 19, 2018, 05:36:01 pm »
    Book stuffing is against the rules. Fact.
    Scammers have existed since the inception of Amazon. Fact.
    Every time the system changes they find new ways to make a buck. Fact.
    Legit authors who use Box Sets will be hurt by this. Fact.
    Legit authors of long books will be hurt by these rules.  Fact.
    Open market's do better than closed in systems that are overly regulated. Fact.
    The readers like Box Sets. Fact.
    Going against your customers is not how you expand a business. Fact.

    The argument that more rules is somehow going to make the scammers go away is based on no observable facts. Every time KU has changed the scammers have adapted. The ones that have born the pain of the rule's are the innocent authors that many here are asking to suffer for them. Sorry but I've played that game, it ends with me on the alter bleeding while the rich are feasting.

    You want the scammers to go away? Lobby Amazon to enforce it's rules.
    Want Box Sets pulled off KU? Convince readers to stop buying them and authors will stop doing it.

    Finally this is absolutely pointless. Amazon will never pull Box Sets or take them out of KU. Because Amazon is all about the readers. You'd be better off fighting for Amazon to enforce their rules than trying to get them to create more. But hey, being an author of long stories I certainly learned who has my back, and that's never not illuminating.

    -KU is sooo not a proper market.

    -You keep conflating buys and borrows. No one wants to stop customers from buying bundles.

    -Did you complain when the short story authors were hit to make things more fair for the novelists?



    Offline OnlyTheGrotesqueKnow

    • Status: Lewis Carroll
    • **
    • Posts: 136
    • Gender: Male
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #56 on: June 19, 2018, 06:24:20 pm »
    -KU is sooo not a proper market.

    -You keep conflating buys and borrows. No one wants to stop customers from buying bundles.

    -Did you complain when the short story authors were hit to make things more fair for the novelists?

    Yes it is. Under many definitions, but I can agree to disagree on this point. Although I'd like to hear your reasons on why more regulation would help it to grow. Especially when it's against the wishes of buyers.

    No, I'm not. I carefully add in the qualifier of KU. Those in KU like Box Sets, that's why many of them are in the top 100.

    Sorry but I wasn't that interested in the minutia of authors on Amazon back then. Which highlights the thrust of my argument. Readers don't care. They like them in BOTH the marketplace and KU. And they are driving the car.

    Can we agree not to demonize each other? You seem to think I have nefarious reasons for believing as I do instead of understanding that I have reasoned arguments for why I disagree. I believe you have good reason why you believe as you do even if I don't share them. We can discuss this on it's merits without resorting to ad hominem attacks.
    To be broken is to be singularly beautiful. Only the shattered are unique in a world of plastic. Scars are the tribal marks of the forgotten, they are how we know our own.

    Offline Crime fighters

    • Status: Scheherazade
    • *****
    • Posts: 1573
    • Ohio
    • Something in the way
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #57 on: June 19, 2018, 06:31:57 pm »
    I think something you're missing is that a lot of these 'compilations' in the Top 100 don't seem to actually have fans. You don't see readers talking about these books. If a book (and author) is 'popular' enough to remain permanently in the top 100, you'd think they'd have much more vocal fans.

    Assuming that these compilations are being read by readers is the first mistake because there's high probability they are using click farms, not to mention the incentivizing that goes into the reader groups. The Amazon top 100, especially when it comes to romance, is not representative of what readers want.

    Offline Ava Glass

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 484
    • Gender: Female
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #58 on: June 19, 2018, 06:51:13 pm »
    Yes it is. Under many definitions, but I can agree to disagree on this point. Although I'd like to hear your reasons on why more regulation would help it to grow. Especially when it's against the wishes of buyers.

    No, I'm not. I carefully add in the qualifier of KU. Those in KU like Box Sets, that's why many of them are in the top 100.

    Sorry but I wasn't that interested in the minutia of authors on Amazon back then. Which highlights the thrust of my argument. Readers don't care. They like them in BOTH the marketplace and KU. And they are driving the car.


    -KU doesn't involve buyers and sellers. It's a huge loss-leader to get customers to buy other things. A system that allows a payout for a single read to greatly exceed a customer's monthly fee is not sustainable on its own. Authors price their books lower than in a normal market because they know they'll make more in KU borrows. It's all screwed up.

     -"Want Box Sets pulled off KU? Convince readers to stop buying them and authors will stop doing it."  This conflates buying and borrowing.

    -So you weren't around when KU 2.0 arrived. Do you now believe 2.0 is more fair to novelists than 1.0?




    Offline OnlyTheGrotesqueKnow

    • Status: Lewis Carroll
    • **
    • Posts: 136
    • Gender: Male
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #59 on: June 19, 2018, 07:03:28 pm »
    I think something you're missing is that a lot of these 'compilations' in the Top 100 don't seem to actually have fans. You don't see readers talking about these books. If a book (and author) is 'popular' enough to remain permanently in the top 100, you'd think they'd have much more vocal fans.

    I don't want to fight with you. Please understand that is the last thing I want to do. In this argument you are making two assumptions without proof. First off, that a lot of the compilations don't have fans. I looked and I found many of them did. Which hits on the definition of 'lot'? I will say that I'd like to change that to the majority. And from what I've seen the majority do in fact have fans. Even if they didn't, I'd still advocate for them to be there simply because it's Amazon's job to catch scammers not an authors job to make sure fans are talking about their books.

    The second assertion is that fans talk about the book. Many in KU don't leave reviews for the books they read. They burn through them and are onto the next. And Box Sets don't attract reviews like singles do. It has to do with the demographic that buys or rents them.

    that these compilations are being read by readers is the first mistake because there's high probability they are using click farms, not to mention the incentivizing that goes into the reader groups. The Amazon top 100, especially when it comes to romance, is not representative of what readers want.

    No there isn't. There is simply no proof that these are being read by bots. I can't prove they aren't being read but then you can never prove a negative and in this discussion it would be on you to prove they were being read solely by bots. While I'm sure some are being read by bots simply through common sense, I would need proof that it is a high probability that all of them are. As for the Top 100 on Amazon not being what readers want, it would beggar the mind to assume all 100 are these scammer books.

    I agree that getting rid of stuffers is something that should be done. I do not agree that getting rid of Box Sets is either going to do that, or should be done simply because other authors don't like them. In the interests of not getting into an argument with anyone I will bow out of this discussion unless my post is directly commented on as I have not wish to fight about something I have no control of anyway.

    All the best.
    To be broken is to be singularly beautiful. Only the shattered are unique in a world of plastic. Scars are the tribal marks of the forgotten, they are how we know our own.

    Offline Crime fighters

    • Status: Scheherazade
    • *****
    • Posts: 1573
    • Ohio
    • Something in the way
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #60 on: June 19, 2018, 07:13:03 pm »
    I don't want to fight with you. Please understand that is the last thing I want to do. In this argument you are making two assumptions without proof. First off, that a lot of the compilations don't have fans. I looked and I found many of them did. Which hits on the definition of 'lot'? I will say that I'd like to change that to the majority. And from what I've seen the majority do in fact have fans. Even if they didn't, I'd still advocate for them to be there simply because it's Amazon's job to catch scammers not an authors job to make sure fans are talking about their books.

    The second assertion is that fans talk about the book. Many in KU don't leave reviews for the books they read. They burn through them and are onto the next. And Box Sets don't attract reviews like singles do. It has to do with the demographic that buys or rents them.

    No there isn't. There is simply no proof that these are being read by bots. I can't prove they aren't being read but then you can never prove a negative and in this discussion it would be on you to prove they were being read solely by bots. While I'm sure some are being read by bots simply through common sense, I would need proof that it is a high probability that all of them are. As for the Top 100 on Amazon not being what readers want, it would beggar the mind to assume all 100 are these scammer books.

    I agree that getting rid of stuffers is something that should be done. I do not agree that getting rid of Box Sets is either going to do that, or should be done simply because other authors don't like them. In the interests of not getting into an argument with anyone I will bow out of this discussion unless my post is directly commented on as I have not wish to fight about something I have no control of anyway.

    All the best.

    Just for clarity, my points were aimed at the scammers. The top 100 romance books had 26 stuffed books the last time I checked a few days ago. Outside of those "compilations", I only noticed two other box sets (one from a stuffer labeling her books as a box set, and the other a legitimate one).

    And no, I can't prove they're using bots other than to say people have been privy to conversations with some of these people. There's an author (no names allowed here) who very blatantly created a click farm and was selling access. That same author has connections to known scammers so I don't need to prove something I never said was a fact, only that I said it was highly likely.

    Offline Andie

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 707
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #61 on: June 19, 2018, 08:03:14 pm »
    I think something you're missing is that a lot of these 'compilations' in the Top 100 don't seem to actually have fans. You don't see readers talking about these books. If a book (and author) is 'popular' enough to remain permanently in the top 100, you'd think they'd have much more vocal fans.

    Assuming that these compilations are being read by readers is the first mistake because there's high probability they are using click farms, not to mention the incentivizing that goes into the reader groups. The Amazon top 100, especially when it comes to romance, is not representative of what readers want.

    Whether or not you see readers talking about a book on social media has nothing to do with whether anyone is reading a book. The readers we see actually tuned in to the book world on twitter/Facebook/etc is such a tiny percentage its irrelevant. And many people are still (I think partially for the same type of judgement that has inspired the current witch hunt) afraid to truthfully disclose that they like reading dirty romance novels.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Offline Jack Krenneck

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 1000
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #62 on: June 19, 2018, 08:44:08 pm »
    An agenda exists among certain people in the author community to eliminate boxed sets and lower a page read cap to 1000 or less. This would financially benefit them. If some of them had their way we would return to KU1 where a five page story earned the same per borrow as a 500 page epic. They would get no support for this, so the red herring is that boxed sets are a scam and that writers of longer fiction should take a hit for the public good -- when in reality it's an attempt to sway general opinion, lobby Amazon and tilt the system to their own financial advantage.

    I'm not suggesting anyone in this thread is actively promoting that agenda. But it does exist, and it has advocates.   

    Offline Crime fighters

    • Status: Scheherazade
    • *****
    • Posts: 1573
    • Ohio
    • Something in the way
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #63 on: June 19, 2018, 09:27:24 pm »
    Whether or not you see readers talking about a book on social media has nothing to do with whether anyone is reading a book. The readers we see actually tuned in to the book world on twitter/Facebook/etc is such a tiny percentage its irrelevant. And many people are still (I think partially for the same type of judgement that has inspired the current witch hunt) afraid to truthfully disclose that they like reading dirty romance novels.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    I've been involved in the romance community for six years. If a book hits the top 100, I hear about it. People talk about it. It's all over the blogs and in reader groups. To have 15 books in the top 100 and to never hear people talking about them is more than strange. Especially when a book stays within the top 100 for months on end, while better books with rabid followsings fall down the ranks.

    And please stop with the witch hunt BS.

    Offline Phxsundog

    • Status: Lewis Carroll
    • **
    • Posts: 116
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #64 on: June 19, 2018, 10:07:27 pm »
    I've been involved in the romance community for six years. If a book hits the top 100, I hear about it. People talk about it. It's all over the blogs and in reader groups. To have 15 books in the top 100 and to never hear people talking about them is more than strange. Especially when a book stays within the top 100 for months on end, while better books with rabid followsings fall down the ranks.

    And please stop with the witch hunt BS.

    This. I've said many times the megastuffers fan base is paper thin. It doesn't matter if most of them have email lists bigger than 50,000 people. Those emails were thrown together during the win a Kindle giveaway craze last year, Instafreebies and from linking free books for email signups. You can scan dozens of big active romance groups every day and these books are never discussed no matter how high they rank. They rarely ever come up on anybody's favorites lists when readers ask each other what great new books they just read. Chance Carter was the only one with a noticeable fan base because he made a show out of his personality more than his books. I'm not saying their fans are nonexistent. However they're shockingly rare and less engaged compared to romance authors who can rank as well as they do with higher quality content. The reason their material is everywhere is because they can spend over a thousand a day in ads at all times thanks to extreme stuffing.

    Offline Andie

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 707
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #65 on: June 19, 2018, 11:52:58 pm »
    I've been involved in the romance community for six years. If a book hits the top 100, I hear about it. People talk about it. It's all over the blogs and in reader groups. To have 15 books in the top 100 and to never hear people talking about them is more than strange. Especially when a book stays within the top 100 for months on end, while better books with rabid followsings fall down the ranks.

    And please stop with the witch hunt BS.

    Better books according to who, exactly?

    Fifty Shades has probably sold more copies than most/all National Book Award winners (probably more than several combined). Sales are rarely associated what book is objectively better (if such a thing could ever be measured). Sales are about what resonates, and most recs, in my experience, happens offline.

    I dont pay much attention to the top 100, but most of what Im seeing after a quick glance are popular authors, Montlake titles, and currently hot subgenres (along with many titles Ive been seeing tons of ads for).

    Ive been in the romance community as a writer for six years, too. As a reader, add another fifteen to that six. Some of the most avid readers Ive ever met have zero clue that these reader groups and blogs even exist. They find books through offline word of mouth, or Facebook ads, or Amazon recs/ads. Ad spend can keep a book in the top 100, if you have a heck of a lot of money to burn.

    Thats how I find books. I read personal recs and books Amazon suggests to me (mostly via also boughts).

    And just for the record, I call this as I see it. To me, as a writer who has no bonus books, no books in the top 100 save for Bookbub weeks and special Amazon-sponsored sales that my pub very occasionally sets up, this smells to me of a witch hunt. It also stinks of BS, now that you mention it. Especially when people start thinking they can define what book is better than another, as if all (or even most) readers will have the exact same taste.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

    Offline Crime fighters

    • Status: Scheherazade
    • *****
    • Posts: 1573
    • Ohio
    • Something in the way
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #66 on: June 20, 2018, 12:12:17 am »

    Relentless in your pursuit to change the narrative.

    It's simple math. I'll break it down for you. Whatever percentage of people you think only talk about books offline still leaves another percentage of people who talk about books online. Nobody ever said most readers are online. That's fiction.

    That percentage of people who talk about books online? They're loud and vocal, and very strongly aligned with the bestseller lists. Or they were until about September / October. We all know what changed them. These people make up a percentage of overall readers, and the books that tend to get more attention online are of the skitter kind.

    And yet, nobody online talks about them.

    There's simple math to be had:

    A.) a few of the well known stuffers are caught red handed with testimonials on a course teaching how to scam the system
    B.) Part of that course involves hiring clickfarms, of which quote a few of them are associated with Author Y who OWNS a damn click farm
    C.) click farms are masked by incentivized page-flips from incentivized reader groups (proof of which exists and not just for the one who got caught).

    A + B + C = X (Scammer with poorly written material packaged as (suddenly) compilations)
    X/scammer apologist = them getting away it.




    edited, PM if you have questions -- Ann
    « Last Edit: June 20, 2018, 04:57:09 am by Ann in Arlington »

    Offline Jonathan C. Gillespie

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 995
    • Gender: Male
    • Atlanta, GA
    • Relentlessly Patient
      • View Profile
      • Fiction For Every Reader
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #67 on: June 20, 2018, 05:45:58 am »
    And here I was, thinking I was doing a good thing by my readers and customers, and giving them options in KU. I did not realize there was so much hate toward box sets. It's an interesting phenomenon, this epublishing, and how it is changing peoples' minds about product types that have basically existed since books were scrolls stored together by topic in the library of Alexandria.

    The Beacon Saga was written as a series of serial installments. I bundled them all into a boxed set, primarily for the convenience of readers, so they didn't have to go back and forth through the store grabbing the installments as they were originally written. I have a clear TOC and product description; I don't see how a reader could be confused, and I'm certainly not trying to scam or mislead anyone.

    I just don't get why the angst isn't centered on the bad actors, as opposed to the format as a whole :-/

    If Amazon ever dropped boxed sets unilaterally from KU, I'd drop select and go wide.
    « Last Edit: June 20, 2018, 05:48:59 am by Jonathan C. Gillespie »


    I write worlds on paper, then destroy them.
    Jonathan C. Gillespie | Official Site | Twitter | facebook | Newsletter

    Offline writerlygal

    • Status: Lewis Carroll
    • **
    • Posts: 159
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #68 on: June 20, 2018, 08:38:33 am »
    Amazon is by definition a marketplace- where people go to buy everything from steamy romance eBooks to toilet paper. What matters on the marketplace is marketing your books so that when people see the title, blurb & MAYBE look inside, they feel instinctually compelled to one-click the book. An impulse buy, so to speak.

    The top 100 authors have definitely mastered marketing. It's being talked about like it's a bad thing but good marketing is necessary to sell the words you write. It's good to cultivate fans & loyal readers [& I think that many of the top 100 authors do this too, judging by the size of their Facebook groups & the comments I see on the Facebook ads, unsolicited from readers] but marketing is also important. You can hate on top 100 authors/publishers all you want but don't spend too much time hating them that you don't notice the kinds of things they do to get those one clicks. It could be that these conspiracy theories are true that they're all using a clickfarm or it could be that they actually know how to market & sell books. Just in case the more realistic option is the one that is true [which is most likely] I think my limited time is better spent learning marketing of my books than complaining on Twitter [where most readers are not spending time].

    Offline Ann in Arlington

    • Global Moderator
    • Status: Shakespeare
    • *****
    • Posts: 67099
    • Not really a moderator. :)
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #69 on: June 20, 2018, 11:28:09 am »
    And without the box sets, you could have downloaded the individual books before you left. What's the problem with having to click a 'borrow all books in this series' button? Would it really be that hard?

    The only benefit of combining all those books into a single file is that scammers can more easily scam page reads. That's it.

    I am not a boxed set reader -- I don't tend to binge because I find I get burned out after a couple books in a row. So I read series -- but I read them in separate stretches not all at once. I don't want to buy books as a set and if that's the only way the story is available, I'll probably not buy (or borrow it if in KOLL) at all. Also multiple books in one file messes with my way of tracking how far into a book I am. A purely personal problem, I know. :)

    That said . . . I can see where RPatton is coming from. If you're going away for a while and want to fill up your kindle, you can only have 10 KU books borrowed at a time. If you're one who reads a lot, 10 individual books might not be enough for you. But 10 sets, or even some of those 10 being sets, gives you that much more to read. So even with a 'borrow all books' button, unless that was configured to only count for 1 borrow even though it's several titles, you're limited. Sure it's easy -- but it doesn't solve RPatton's problem.

    Note: the above assumes that your primary source of reading material is Amazon/KU, you haven't the budget/desire to buy books that you know you will only read once, and you will be going somewhere with limited wifi access.
    « Last Edit: June 20, 2018, 11:30:08 am by Ann in Arlington »
    My Kindles
    Hermoine's Handbag (Voyage)
    Ed's (Voyage Refurb)
    Bedtime Reading (Oasis 9)
    Godric's Hollow (Basic 7)
    My Tardis (PW 10)

    Offline dianapersaud

    • Status: Scheherazade
    • *****
    • Posts: 1920
      • View Profile
      • Diana Persaud
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #70 on: June 20, 2018, 11:40:27 am »
    So are you saying that box sets are also being used to get around a limit Amazon has set on the number of books readers can borrow?

    If Amazon are OK with that, they can simply allow you to borrow an entire series and count it as a single borrow, as you say. If they're not, it's another reason to stop allowing box sets in KU, because they're breaking the rules that apply to everyone else.

    Sounds like you want to punish readers.

    I'm a voracious reader and right before I went on vacation, I loaded up my kindle and the kid's kindle in case we were rained out and stuck in the room all week. We were promised wifi (which worked) but I never count on stuff like that.

    I ended up DNF 3 books but read the others.

    Box sets aren't the problem. Gaming the system is the problem. Capping KENPC at 1K would solve that problem--it's generous enough to cover individual books that are long as well as a 3 book box set for some authors.

    But even if Amazon capped the KENPC, KDP will still be gamed. It's a broken system and KDP does the bare minimum to keep it going.

    Diana Persaud | My Website

    Offline Ann in Arlington

    • Global Moderator
    • Status: Shakespeare
    • *****
    • Posts: 67099
    • Not really a moderator. :)
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #71 on: June 20, 2018, 11:42:38 am »
    So are you saying that box sets are also being used to get around a limit Amazon has set on the number of books readers can borrow?

    If Amazon are OK with that, they can simply allow you to borrow an entire series and count it as a single borrow, as you say. If they're not, it's another reason to stop allowing box sets in KU, because they're breaking the rules that apply to everyone else.

    No. Not saying that at all.

    A publisher who includes several volumes in one file, properly listed as such, and following the rule about duplicate content, is legitimately providing more reading for the borrower. And for certain borrowers, it's HUGE value. There's no breaking of rules. UNLESS, of course, there was a rule that said only one book per file. Which there currently isn't and is exactly what is under discussion here: should multiple books per file be allowed?

    I get the argument that they should NOT -- because that prevents people from putting extra 'books' at the back of the advertised title, and greatly simplifies the (currently flawed) system for discovering and blocking such titles.

    I get the argument that legitimate anthologies or author boxed sets SHOULD be allowed as there are a whole subset of KU subscribers/customers/readers who really value them, and Amazon is all about the customer being happy.
    My Kindles
    Hermoine's Handbag (Voyage)
    Ed's (Voyage Refurb)
    Bedtime Reading (Oasis 9)
    Godric's Hollow (Basic 7)
    My Tardis (PW 10)

    Offline Jonathan C. Gillespie

    • Status: Arthur Conan Doyle
    • ****
    • Posts: 995
    • Gender: Male
    • Atlanta, GA
    • Relentlessly Patient
      • View Profile
      • Fiction For Every Reader
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #72 on: June 20, 2018, 12:19:39 pm »
    I think what I find unfair is this assumption that the primary motivation to putting boxed sets in KU is gaming the system.

    There's an old adage in site design: "Don't make the user think." Amazon has spent billions on making a storefront centered as much as possible on saving the user time in finding the perfect product and completing the ordering transaction as easily as possible, with as fewest clicks as possible. Boxed sets are perfectly suited for that kind of customer, and I don't see why KU should incur some kind of penalty on a reader looking for that content. Why should they have a worse experience? Not all of us want to necessarily expect the user to track down and borrow all the individual installments, and the user might not to as well.

    A "borrow the whole series" button would be helpful, but it still doesn't lead to maximum convenience.


    I write worlds on paper, then destroy them.
    Jonathan C. Gillespie | Official Site | Twitter | facebook | Newsletter

    Offline Used To Be BH

    • Status: Dostoevsky
    • ******
    • Posts: 3694
    • Gender: Male
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #73 on: June 20, 2018, 01:31:16 pm »
    I think what I find unfair is this assumption that the primary motivation to putting boxed sets in KU is gaming the system.

    There's an old adage in site design: "Don't make the user think." Amazon has spent billions on making a storefront centered as much as possible on saving the user time in finding the perfect product and completing the ordering transaction as easily as possible, with as fewest clicks as possible. Boxed sets are perfectly suited for that kind of customer, and I don't see why KU should incur some kind of penalty on a reader looking for that content. Why should they have a worse experience? Not all of us want to necessarily expect the user to track down and borrow all the individual installments, and the user might not to as well.

    A "borrow the whole series" button would be helpful, but it still doesn't lead to maximum convenience.
    I could be mistaken, but I don't recall anyone saying the primary motivation for box sets is to game the system. Historically, box sets have served a number of legitimate purposes.

    My concern about box sets is whether scammers, deprived of stuffing, which they dodged by labeling their compilations as such, will simply migrate to box sets if compilations are disallowed in KU (which I think is at least possible, maybe even likely).

    Anyone among us could easily tell the difference between a random collection of material and a box set. The question is whether an Amazon bot could tell the difference. If not, that could be a problem at some point.

    I'm not by any means married to the idea of banning box sets from KU. I do think that there needs to be some system for distinguishing real box sets from stuffing by another name. The only response to that I got before was allowing box sets but lowering the page cap, which potentially reduces the value of box sets to authors as well as hitting authors in some genres like epic fantasy where novels run much longer. It's not an ideal solution, either, though it does have the virtue of being easy to enforce.

    We could also treat the potential for scammers to exploit box sets as tomorrow's problem and wait for it to become an issue. Perhaps it never will, though past history suggests that scammers will hide wherever they can.

    By the way, I wouldn't dismiss the idea of virtual box sets (giving readers an option to buy or download in KU all series titles simultaneously). Thus far, Amazon hasn't shown any interest in the idea, but it could actually have some advantages. Right now, box sets existing under separate ASINs are essentially competing for ranking with the individual volumes. Unless the single books are dead, and the only way sales occur is through the box sets, what they effectively do is split series sales into two separate piles, making each product rank lower than would have been the case if they were all in one pile. Someone buying or borrowing the books as a virtual set wouldn't create that problem, and it would be easy for Amazon to make an arrangement for authors to offer a discount for buying the whole series at once (which covers another reason people have box sets).

    Amazon already has some of the code to do that. Matchbook requires the coordination of two different sales to produce a discounted ebook price, and those frequently bought together groupings enable customers to buy all three the listed books at once. The only thing that needs to be added is the ability to discount such purchases, which doesn't seem as if it should be a major coding problem.
    I have not consented to the new Terms of Service, which were implemented without any announcement and without the ability to accept or reject them. My continued participation on the forum is related only to addressing this issue and cannot be construed as implied consent.  9/19/2018

    Offline 101569

    • Status: Jane Austen
    • ***
    • Posts: 484
      • View Profile
    Re: Why are Boxed Sets/Bundles/Etc Allowed In Select?
    « Reply #74 on: June 20, 2018, 01:38:03 pm »
    I will comment as a reader, because I don't really count as an author yet.

    I read a tooooooon of books, and have also had the situation where I go on vacation with questionable access to internet.

    Finding a decent book in the bestsellers list is a pain in the butt. I have cancelled my KU subscription several times in frustration. Spending an hour looking for a book that has a story that is worth reading drives me nuts. Literally insane.  To combat that I create a list of trusted authors, but they cant put out a big enough quantity of books to keep up with my reading needs. That leaves me sorting though all the junk in KU. There is junk point blank. There are tons of "books" that aren't books, but instead collections of novella's that are advertised as books. Most with almost no story line to follow and that is in the top 100. It used to be that I could buy almost any book in the top 100 and enjoy even if it wasn't my favorite style of book at least someone along the line edited them. If I notice that you have grammatical errors you're in trouble, cause my grammar is the worst.


    The vacation access isn't an issue. I own books. I don't solely rely on KU for all my reading needs. My personal collection though not as vast as I would like supplements what my 10 books on KU lack.  I doubt most readers only use KU at least the voracious kind. We have our favorite authors and many of them are NOT in KU. I'd say 1 out of maybe 20 of the authors I really like are in KU.  I don't just download random collections/boxsets through KU for a trip, because I will end up not being able to read the majority of the books. I either preview the author or the book.

    I am not a picky reader by any means. Prior to ereaders i would buy books by the box in used bookstores. Out of a box there MIGHT be one book that i cant/didn't finish.

    Currently in my Kindle there are 2 boxsets downloaded that I am reading today and will finish today. (Yes I know bad author.) That said I would be more than happy to give up good boxsets to get rid of the junk thats pretending to be good books.

    As an author and something for amazong to think about is the fact you are losing readers to the irritation of finding decent books on KU. I have thought several times of switching out of amazon totally and buying books elewhere.  Amazon is treating readers like they are a dime a dozen allowing the junk to proliferate. Enough people get irritated and leave another retailer will pick us up.


    KBoards.com

    • Advertisement
    • ***