The Shatzkin Files

Is an 80% ebook world for straight text really in sight?

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The recent news that digital revenues have reached approximately 20% at some of the Big Six houses makes me believe that we are on the verge of a tectonic shift in the industry. It provoked me to think through the logical extension of well-established trends and comment recently that I see an 80% ebook world for straight narrative text coming in two to five years. (By “straight narrative text” I mean books of just words.)

One of my most respected sometimes colleagues privately told me the 80% number was “absurd”. But considering the logic and evidence that was offered up to refute my projection only made me more convinced that I’m right. So it’s time to expose the thought process to one of the most acute groups of critical thinkers I know: the readers of this blog.

When the Kindle came on the scene in November 2007, almost exactly four years ago, ebook sales were in the neighborhood of 1% of major publishers’ sales revenue. Since then it has risen, by my calculations, between 2 and 2.6 times per year. So we’re at 20% of revenue now in October 2011; we were a bit under 10% a year ago, around 4% this time in 2009, and about 2% at this time in 2008, when Kindle was in its infancy and its only device competition was the Sony Reader. (When you look at “annual” numbers for each of those years they’re lower, but that’s because share was gained throughout those years, fueled by new device releases; I’m talking about where things stood at about this point of the year.)

I interpret 20% of Big Six sales revenue to mean something closer to 25% of units sold, because ebooks bring in substantially less revenue per copy sold than print on major hardcover books (although they can bring in a bit more on paperbacks). But many books were not yet ebookable: most juveniles and illustrated books are not represented in that figure. So I don’t think it is a stretch to figure that ebooks are constituting 30% of the units sold for straight narrative text.

(Working backwards, that means I think ebooks were about 15% of the straight narrative text units a year ago, about 6% of the units in 2009, 2-3% of the units in 2008, and probably fewer than 1% of the units in 2007, before Kindle.)

Although the following analysis was widely misunderstood when I offered it on a prior post (the misunderstandings are evident in the comment string), the way I’m defining the measurement of this — what percentage of a straight text book’s total sale will be ebooks? — the number cannot exceed 100%. So, clearly, it is impossible for the rate of share growth which has been sustained for four years, since the introduction of the Kindle, to continue for more than about another 18 months.

In fact, at some point the switchover from print to ebooks will slow to a crawl. Sales of straight text books won’t reach 98% digital for many years, perhaps decades. What I’d expect is that we’ll reach a point of print resistance and adoption will slow down dramatically. We can argue about where that point will be. I think it is 80%. A major executive was reported to have said in Frankfurt that he thinks ebook sales will “plateau” at 40%. (Maybe he meant 40% of revenue, which, depending on how much of the house’s output was straight text, would probably be nearer to 60% of straight text units.) Everybody’s entitled to their opinion and only time will prove us right or wrong.

There are a lot of reasons to expect a continuation of the recent trend of share doubling every year, at least for a while longer. Ebook readers and tablet computers are getting cheaper and more widely distributed, by which I mean that more and more places are selling them. (One hears widespread speculation that next year we’ll see offers for devices to be free with the purchase of a number of ebooks.) The number of titles available in multiple languages continues to grow. The price of new books in digital editions is established at about half the publisher’s suggested hardback price for the hottest new releases (and also much less than most stores would sell the print book for). Everybody who hasn’t yet switched to a digital device yet knows people who have successfully and comfortably done so. More and more libraries have ebook offerings (although they can’t obtain a lot of the bestsellers at this time.)

Cheaper books, more to choose from, and more plentiful and cheaper devices would not imply any slowdown in adoption in the short term, except that those most receptive to switching have already done so. But I don’t find that a persuasive argument for an imminent slowdown; some of the late adoptees, particularly the young, just couldn’t afford the devices until the prices came down.

In fact, one thing Amazon established very early in the life of the Kindle is that the heavier book purchasers tend to move to the readers faster. It makes intuitive sense that the price of a reader is amortized more quickly by somebody who buys more books. So, in fact, we could reach 80% of the units being purchased digitally if a much smaller number, say 40% of the people who buy books, make the transition.

Among those reading this post who would fervently hope I’m wrong would be anybody with an interest in a brick bookstore, whose survival challenge is only made more difficult if the trend to ebook reading accelerates. What this says to me is bookstores would be wise to specialize in books that make great gifts and children’s books (and there is some anecdotal evidence that the stores doing well have done exactly that; the most often cited being Books and Books in Coral Gables, FL).

So except that we know the adoption rate must (at some point) slow down as we approach saturation, I find little reason to assume that it will do so anytime soon.

If the trend that has been unbroken for four years continued for another year, ebooks would constitute 40% of big publisher sales volume and 60% of units for all straight text books by a year from now. At that rate, we’d reach 80% units on straight text in the quarter after Christmas 2012.

When I say I think we’ll hit it in two to five years, I’m being consciously restrained. To get there in two years would require that consumers switch from print to digital at about 60-70 percent of the speed they have for the last four years over the next two. Were it to take five years, it would mean the conversion rate would have slowed to a crawl compared to where it has been.

So the outer edge of the prediction I stated (five years) is, to my way of thinking, unlikely because it is too slow. Predicting the current rate for 18 months is probably too aggressive, but 2-3 years is not. Having it take longer than that would surprise me and I’d love it if anybody predicting that would explain what they think will slow things down so drastically in the months to come compared to the recent past.

The colleague who thought I had taken leave of reality offered some logic. First of all, it was observed that ebook sales rose most rapidly in 2011 right after Christmas, particularly as a percentage of total sales, rather than steadily throughout the year. That didn’t surprise me. It is due to an effect I have written about previously which last year was not softened by new device releases midyear and previously had been.

Ebook readers make great Christmas gifts (better every year than the year before because there are more to choose from and they get cheaper). This has turned Christmas Day into a great sales day for ebooks but the process of new device owners “loading up” apparently continues for a couple of months after Christmas. So ebook sales in the first quarter are artificially inflated and will continue to be until we reach saturation on readers, which will probably be at least two more years. When just about everybody who reads many books already has an ereader, the post-Christmas bump will diminish markedly.

But, at the same time, the print sales reported are depressed in the first quarter. Returns come in from what have too often recently been disappointing print sales at Christmas and, at the same time, the purchase of new titles in the first quarter is dampened because some stores give up the ghost after a failed Christmas season and others are jolted into greater conservatism in their stocking by declining sales.

Since print book sales net of returns are depressed and ebook sales are stimulated by gift devices, the percentage of sales that are digital reaches a dramatic new height in the first quarter. This has happened in recent years and will happen again in 2012 and maybe in 2013.

Ebook sales in dollars were also reduced in the past two years by switches to agency pricing. Five of the Big Six went agency on April 1, 2010, when the iBookstore opened. Random House went to agency in early March, 2011. When publishers switch from the wholesale model to agency, the amount they get from each ebook they sell goes down. So even if the book continues to sell at exactly the same velocity (and it might not, since agency also raises prices to the consumer), the publisher’s revenue will decline.

These changes, which have raised the price of major publisher ebooks, have not prevented the year-on-year growth described in this piece, but the timing of the agency switches did tend to make the increases look like they are grouped in one big step increment at the beginning of the year.

To an extent they are but not as much as they look. And we’ll be taking that step again when the calendar turns over to 2012.

(The dampening impact on revenues of the switch to agency by the five publishers in April 2010 was mitigated, indeed overwhelmed, by the impact of all those iPad devices creating new purchasers for ebooks. And there were new devices that year from Nook as well.)

Another piece of evidence I was asked to consider that would apparently contravene the 80% prediction is that music sales are still split 50-50 between digital downlads and shrinkwrapped CDs. I love knocking down comparisons with the music business (I started doing it in the very early days of the blog) but this one is almost too easy.

While sales of music may still be split 50-50 between downloads and CDs, consumption is almost certainly not. People can acquire their music on CDs and still consume it through digital devices. By doing that, they get additional value in metadata (those little books that come with the CDs) and they get a copy of the music that they can readily give away as a gift.

But when somebody switches over to consume their books digitally, purchasing the hard copy version is not an option. So it isn’t helpful or indicative to look at how music sales divide; we’d have to look at how music consumption divides. And I’ll bet anybody who wants the wager that it is not 50-50! When was the last time you saw somebody playing a CD?

It was also offered up to me that Bowker polling of book consumers has found consistently this year that only 15% of the people report having bought an ebook each month. I’d say that is entirely consistent with my hunch that 30% of straight text units are digital. We’ve observed throughout the digital transition that ebook purchasers are heavy purchasers. In fact, I’d have been surprised (and felt I had some explaining to do) if the number of ebook purchasers were higher than 15% at the moment.

Until the leap this year, the switch from print consumption to ebooks was deceptively easy for a publisher to absorb without making drastic changes to its organizational structure. That time has passed. The book business we see today — how titles are acquired, developed, marketed, and distributed — is still built on the basic industry that was constructed over the past 100 years. Unless there is something wildly wrong with my logic (and I’m counting on my readers to make me see it if there is), we’ll see more fundamental change in the way straight text books are published over the next 36 months than we have over the past 36 years.

The implications of this shift require a lot more thought than I’ve been able to give it so far. But one thing I think it will mean is that trade publishing will trifurcate in the next few years. With bookstores as the primary distribution channel, it was no problem for one publisher to do straight text narrative, children’s books, and illustrated books. They shipped to the same customers in the same box. If bookstores aren’t the primary channel, these different kinds of “books” will not have a lot of commonality: in sourcing, creation, marketing, or distribution channels. I wonder how many publishers are thinking about their publishing programs with that in mind.

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  • Very interesting post, Mike, and I would tend to support your arguments that the level ebooks will “plateau” is around 80%.

    Makes sense. 40% doesn’t, that’s for sure.

    I would add that with cheaper e-readers becoming universally available, we are going to see an expansion of the “reading pie” – I mean more readers’ markets will come in, particularly places like India and Brazil (I’m not counting China in because it’s a world of its own, they’ve developed their own Amazon-like company and kicked out Google to all intents). The expanding pie will benefit ebooks not  printed books – obviously since it’s going to be a function of cheaper e-readers!

    I found especially interesting your comment that the agency pricing model didn’t impact negatively essentially because that year new e-readers were introduced – in fact the introduction of new and cheaper e-readers is the one big factor to watch to understand which way the market will go. Plus the fact that the agency pricing model is now under legal attack and it could well disappear in about 2 to 3 or 4 years. Thus another boost to e-books!

    • Well, I think we differ on the value of the agency pricing model, but I’m glad we agree on a lot else.

      Remember this: if agency goes, the fledgling writers who are getting notice by being cheaper won’t anymore. I won’t make the arguments about preserving retailer diversity or making it possible for successful writers to continue making a great living (which will also be victims), but the outsiders will be hurt too.


      • Agreed! I guess I wasn’t totally clear or consequential! In fact, I’m convinced that as soon as the agency model stops being in use (for legal or other reasons – publishers could wake up to the opportunity of selling ebooks as cheaply as indies do) that will be the END of the window of opportunity for indies.

        Price competition (i.e. fighting for market share with low prices) will stop having any effect on sales since everyone, but especially publishers with their marketing clout, will be operating at low prices.

        But we’re talking of market shares here. I guess what I meant is that the pie expands because e-reader prices drop. Then who gets the benefits – publishers or indies – is an open question…

      • Claude, what is a much greater concern to me is diversity in the retail network. If I were Amazon and there were no agency, I’d pursue the 1890s railroad strategy of cutting prices below cost to starve out the competition. I don’t know how long BN and Kobo could compete with that. Apple would have to reconsider their whole model. And Google would have to have a complete re-think, because I don’t believe it’s on their roadmap to spend large sums of money to gain ebook market share.

        Agency, which would be overturned by people who think they’re fighting some sort of price-fixing, would likely result in a monopoly. And you’re damn right publishers would be cutting their prices then, because their “route to market” would be telling them they have to!

        In fact, the strategy for big publishers you are proposing is only possible *with* agency, when they could cut prices and starve out the indies. They’re not doing it because they make more money for themselves and their authors by maintaining prices.


      • Scott Nicholson

        I really doubt traditional authors are making more money under the agency model. I am just one of the many former midlist writers who is now making a living when it was impossible before. The greater cut of proceeds far offsets any dubious marketing advantage offered by a publisher. Of course, there could be validity in your belief that the high prices make my lower prices more attractive–but I always play the hand I’m dealt. if the rules change, I’ll change with them.

        But these suppositions are also based on a rather conservative vision of the future–one that expects everything to continue evolving as it hard before, in a straight line rather than making radical detours. Who is to say that all ereaders and ebooks won’t be free in five years, supported by advertising? Hard to see a way most writers would earn money, and the electronic bookstores would fare way better than big publishers, but I see the ad-supported Kindle as a clear move in that direction. When the digital production cost per unit (each book copy) is a fraction of a penny, why not exploit economies of scale?

      • Scott, I don’t have the link, but Tim O’Reilly did a *very *clear piece on why supporting free books with advertising is a non-starter. The numbers simply don’t add up.

        I agree with the philosophy of playing the hand your dealt. But right now the situation carves out an opportunity for the self-published writer through pricing. So you’ve been dealt four to a flush and you can draw a winning card a substantial amount of the time. When the publishers are forced down in price, and they will be, and you are required to draw to an inside straight, you might find it quite as lucrative at the poker table.
        To employ another metaphor, “make hay while the sun shines!”


      • Jeff Dwyer


        This is a very perceptive prediction of the future of ebook expansion and the shrinkage of paper publication. With this inevitable change, we’ll see the consolidation or disappearance of poorly capitalized publishers and literary agencies. Publishers and agencies without stable selling back list titles will not enjoy the wide margins that paper sales provided in the past, and they won’t be able to pay the overhead to keep their operations solvent. Increasingly, the talent will not allow publishers to retain 75% of their ebook sales revenues and they’ll migrate into indie publishing unless publishers can prove that they have more to offer than their old slapdash marketing efforts. Future publishing agreements will be tied to annual sales performance benchmarks or the talent will regain control of their work. Everyone in the supply chain will need to substantiate why they’re getting a piece of the sales revenues because with digital publishing, the creators of the product can reach their customers directly. I don’t fear for the indie author with the inevitable disappearance of the agency pricing model. On the contrary, I think that instead of the talent chasing agents and publishers as their past gateway into the marketplace, the indie author will find themselves pursued by the old gatekeepers trying to convince the talent why they should partner with them instead of remaining independent. The roles are slowly reversing, and the establishment doesn’t like it. Can’t blame ’em.

      • I think everything you describe will be a tendency. But the speed and shape of change is a little harder to predict. There will still be a paper book sale for convenience on a number of levels that will still benefit from inventory. That means investment, management, and scale. There will still be scale benefits in niche marketing very obviously, and perhaps in more general marketing too. There will be skill sets like SEO and foreign market promotion (for translations or “export”).

        And there are still contracts controlling millions in core backlist pretty much forever.

        And all of those things provide leverage.

        In other words, I don’t disagree with what you’re saying but I think it will be a slow-motion disaster, even when it becomes obvious that it will be a disaster. I think some authors will still be signing 7 and 8 figure contracts three years from now. And there will still be more expensive books that stand out from the overall noise that were put there by marketing machines.


      • Jeff Dwyer


        I agree completely with your comment. Under the old standards of publishing agreements, when a publisher allowed a property to languish and disappear by no longer printing and distributing the book, the talent could demand that their book be reprinted and placed back in the distribution chain, or they could have their rights reverted and try to exploit their work themselves. Unless an author is extremely careful and has wise representation, with the introduction of ebooks, publishers are able to park the talent’s work product on a server and retain control of the author’s work product – as you say . . . forever. With time, this will sort out and change, and it should.

  • Nicole Langan

    Thank you for such an insightful post!

  • I agree. 80% of straight narrative text as digital product is on its way. Very soon.

    And, per the conversation w/Claude, I agree that agency pricing is the wall across the road to an Amazon digital monopoly. I’m imagining an alternate world in which Amazon is to reading what Microsoft was to personal computing OS a few years ago. But that kind of monopoly never lasts too long–though it’s terrible while it does.

    I can’t see agency pricing lasting very long, though–not unless publishers get a little smarter and/or more experimental with their pricing, just a little more flexible and responsive in real time.

    • Nicola, the publishers are very slowly learning to experiment with pricing. But what is keeping them from doing more of it is that consumers are, for the most part, still accepting the pricing that is given to them. And while prices remain as high as they are (although they’re bound to come down…) it is giving some space for newbies to get discovered more easily.

      Best of all worlds, for the moment…


      • Mike, the consumers are decidedly NOT accepting it. Or at least, not for any but the highest profile of books. Look at the book sales for medium profile writers. Many, many of those who have an established fan base–perhaps even the majority–are selling very few digital books. Often only a handful per month.
        No wonder! The publishers have simply priced the books altogether too high.
        I refer here to fiction. I don’t follow the trends in non-fiction, but I believe they do rather better. Fiction fans have broader options in the form of reasonably-priced self-published and indie-published books,  and they are taking advantage of those options.

      • The Internet does favor “power law” distributions (of everything) where the high end is very high but the long tail is reached very quickly. I have not asked major publishers about whether their sales percentages for digital drop dramatically for mid-list authors. However, I do have impression (from anecdata) that: 1) midlist authors aren’t doing as well in print as they used to either and 2) that non-fiction doesn’t do as well as fiction in ebooks.

        But it would surprise me if the kind of sales revenues we’re seeing for Big Six publishers are being achieved on bestsellers alone. I am not sure what kind of data you have access to but your comment makes it clear that there is a lot of analysis to be done.


      • I can add some personal anecdata (I like that term!).

        I’m probably what most people might label a midlist author. I’m making a lot more money on ebooks than print books at the moment. But my publishers (various, Big Six) are experimenting clumsily with the pricing. One novel, for example, was wobbling between $11.99 and $14.99 (this for a book that’s been out more than four years…), then suddenly dropped to $3.99. Sales shot up. But then, instead of playing around with that price, adjusting dynamically, the publishers just left it. The low-price effect has now ceased–if it were up to me I’d put the price back up to something like $8–but I’ll still be only earning a tiny fee per sale, because of the low-price. And I won’t see any of that money, anyway, for nearly a year because of the (needlessly) antiquated royalty accounting.It makes me want to pull my hair out. This is just a software issue. I want to see publishers pay attention and figure it out.

      • This is old systems meeting new realities. Change is coming, but it won’t be fast enough to make you happy and it might not be fast enough to save some publishers.

      • I hear that. Sigh.

  • gous

    ‘the logic of ebook success has built-in feedback loops’

    As I mentioned elsewhere this remains perhaps the single best article as to why the rise of ebooks will not be halted anytime soon. The only argument remaining is whether we will get to the digital destination tomorrow or the day after that.

    Some forms of non narrative – such as comix and manga – will be the next to fall with cheap color tablets becoming the norm by end of next year…

    All this said it is true that confident predictions about ebooks have proved false before. The reasons for this was explored by Michael Mace, and that in 2006!
    That entire series is worth reading.

    Any chance we will see The Mathematics of Bookselling in ebook form? The industry it describes has only a few more years left, at least in the USA, and I’ve become disinclined to read paper books.

    • Two very useful links. Thank you.

      The second piece says the ebook tipping point is 20%. We’re about there. The first 20% is the hardest…

      I have put In Cold Type into epub. I haven’t issued it because I have to write an introduction and that’s harder that you think for reasons more complex than I can explain here. I haven’t done the same for Mathematics of Bookselling and I probably won’t. It’s cheap and short. The printed copy will suffice and, considering the subject, the people who need it most should be okay reading it in print!


  • Not much to disagree with, here.  😉

    Actually, I can firm up your points with more data. The AAP numbers suggest around 20% of big publishing’s revenue is ebooks now. However, the AAP numbers *only* count the largest publishers for ebooks, a flaw they admit reduces the value of their data.

    That’s critical, because while “big six” publishers represent a supermajority of print sales, that isn’t the case in ebooks. In fact, interested parties have done weekly scans of the Amazon ebook bestseller list since March. Only during the two weeks of summer sales did the self pub/small press percent drop below 37% of the top 100. In most fiction genres, the self pub/small press group represents over 50% of the top 200 bestselling ebooks. In some, it’s as high as 50% for self published books alone. A survey done in July showed that over a third of the top 1000 bestselling books on Amazon were self published.

    NONE of those books show up in the AAP numbers. Most of these untracked books are priced in the 99 cent to $4.99 range, quite a bit lower than most “Big 6” books, so their effect on revenue is less than the raw numbers of sales would indicate.

    But their impact on unit sales is significant. Impossible to tell how significant, but I cannot believe that such an enormous percentage of the top selling slots, held so consistently for so long, does not represent a large share of unit sales.

    Again, how large? No way to tell. If we estimate conservatively that it’s only a third of unit sales though, that makes the ebook percent as high as 40% or so at present for text-type books.

    It’s my personal estimate that across all fiction titles, ebooks will hit 50% of unit sales in the first four months of 2012. However, most of those sales will not be Big 6 books.

    • Thanks for adding this data, Kevin. What it suggests to me is that the self-published books are probably in the neighborhood of 10% or so of the dollar sales. It would be interesting, if we had the data, to say what does better further out in the tail: the books that have some “brand” or the self-published.

      It looks to me like we’re developing a dual market: one of people that just prefer cheaper and one of people that prefer “branded”. For people who were already consuming lots of print books, ebooks at agency prices still feel like a bargain. For people who are just discovering the joys of book reading because they have a device encouraging them and making shopping easier, the difference between about a buck and ten or more is really substantial.

      Or at least that’s my theory today.


      • the dual market is good insightful distinction…wonder how much print book buying the “cheaper” consumer did prior to adopting e reader…and consequently what that does to interpretation of the  numbers thrown around….how many are new “book buyers per se, in other words? enough to consider that it may not be quite as simple as it might appear??

      • It seems almost certain to me that cheaper ebooks (and I don’t know which part due to “cheaper” and which part due to “ebooks”) is expanding the market from what it used to be. Bringing in former library patrons, maybe? Or new readers? It will take a long time to know, if we ever do.


      • C Cremers

        In my case, cheaper ebooks transfer a lot of my buying from the used bookstore to the Kindle suppliers.  As an example, I recently discovered 2 new mystery authors that I quite like : Aaron Elkins and J D Robb.  A large number of Elkin’s backlist titles are available through a non-big 5/6 and are available for under 4$.  I promptly downloaded all of the under 4$ backlist to my Kindle.  

        Robb’s books are all in the 9-10$ range.  For those, I did the used bookstore loop and got 15-20 for less than 5$ each ( store credit really helps ! )

      • Thanks. Of course the true economics are the sum of lots of different behaviors; the ereading population is growing and habits are evolving. It will be a while before anybody can state “truth” about the overall market with much certainty.


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  • Jennyfrost

    The fate of brick and mortar will contribute to this. As the superstores disappear and the total number of brick and mortar outlets shrink, backlist sales will accelerate to e-book readers as titles become more difficult to find in stores. Even Amazon says they sell more e-books than print books so that won’t inhibit the trend. As smaller publisher offer more of their books in digital format, that, too, will support the overal shift.

    • Yes, Jenny, agreed that it all feeds on itself. More books mean less bookstore shelf space which in turn drives consumers to more ebooks. That’s part of the reason I don’t think the process slows down anytime soon.


  • JR Tomlin

    I don’t totally agree with the analysis on self-publishers. Yes, the end of the agency model will mean that self-publishers no longer have an advantage but it won’t take them out of the game. The advantage publishers have always had wasn’t pricing. It was control of distribution.

    I believe that they *may* have lost that for all time, or at least for a long time in the future. Thus, there will continue to be a door of opportunity for self-publishers. Will it get tougher if/when that happens? Yes. But it won’t be the sky falling. 

    • I don’t mean to suggest any end of self-publishing, nor that it won’t remain a valid opportunity for commercial success. Right now a lot of the promotion of the competition is being financed and enabled by print sales and that won’t be so much the case in an 80% ebook future.

      But agency is definitely a big help at both ends and both ends will suffer financially if it disappears.


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  • Lisa Buchan

    Another insightful post – thanks Mike. I can also confirm that most of the smaller, independent publishers (who make up the majority of our community at are growing – which seems to be in contrast to the big publishers who have flat or declining revenues – is this what you are seeing as well? 

    • Lisa, I think the big publishers are doing pretty well at the moment too. Agency makes digital revenues look flatter, but it also expands margins.
      There is great opportunity in the current environment for smaller publishers. I’m glad to hear your cohort is doing well.


  • Davidsbooks

    Does it make any sense in this environment for books a million to be opening 40 new stores, mainly in areas where borders have closed? (They are also closing about 30 stores that were losing the most money). The chain as a whole I believe is losing money, and one of their better sellers, the B&N nook, is expected to lose out to the new kindle fire.

    • I agree it is puzzling, but some store locations will continue to thrive. Maybe they selected very well.


  • Richard


    Many thanks for yet another excellent and thought-provoking post. One small thing – here in the Olde Worlde I still see people (admittedly ‘mature adults’ in the main) playing CDs all the time, not least when driving…I think you are probably exaggerating that element of the transition much more than anything else!

    • It will take longer to rewire the cars for iPods than it does everything else.


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