Friday, July 18, 2014

Kindle Lending or, Lo, The Inevitable Has Arrived

This just arrived in the inbox:

Today we are excited to introduce Kindle Unlimited-–a new subscription service for readers in the U.S. and a new revenue opportunity for authors enrolled in KDP Select. Customers will be able to read as many books as they want from a library of over 600,000 titles while subscribed to Kindle Unlimited. All books enrolled in KDP Select with U.S. rights will be automatically included in Kindle Unlimited. 
KDP Select authors and publishers will earn a share of the KDP Select global fund each time a customer accesses their book from Kindle Unlimited and reads more than 10% of their book-–about the length of reading the free sample available in Kindle books-–as opposed to a payout when the book is simply downloaded. Only the first time a customer reads a book past 10% will be counted. 
KDP Select books will also continue to be enrolled in the Kindle Owners' Lending Library (KOLL) available to Amazon Prime customers in the U.S., U.K., Germany, France, and Japan where authors will continue to earn a share of the KDP Select global fund when their book is borrowed. KOLL borrows will continue to be counted when a book is initially downloaded. 
For July, we've added $800,000 to the fund, bringing the July fund amount to $2 million. 
Learn more about Kindle Unlimited. Visit your Bookshelf to enroll your titles in KDP Select, and click on "Manage Benefits" to get started. 
Best regards,
The Kindle Direct Publishing Team

Yes, some of my titles are in Kindle Select-- notably, the most recent, Metaphysical Odyssey into the Mexican Revolution and the Spanish titles Odisea metafisca hacia la Revolución Mexicana and the novel El último príncipe del Imperio Mexicano. 

Everything also listed at iTunes iBookstore, no.

My take on Kindle Lending is: Good thing. But it should exert a downward push on Kindle edition prices.

Another thought: Commercial book lending, whether electronic or bricks-and-mortar, is the future. In part because it's easier to do with digital technology and in part because I doubt that U.S. public libraries will be able to maintain their services in the coming fiscal crunch.

COMMENTS always welcome.

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