Tuesday, October 6, 2009

E-Book Readers Are Being Marketed to the Wrong People

Jason Pinter says e-book readers are being marketed to the wrong people. I think he's right - currently, e-book advertisements are aimed at people who already read a lot instead of at reluctant readers. Why not aim it more toward that market? Maybe take a note from the iPod and design them to be a little more fun. I wonder if there could be some way to add in a kind of dictionary function that would help people read - when you don't know a word, you could click it and get an option to look it up in a dictionary on the reader itself.

Ebooks should expand the book buying market, not be used as an alternative for the print edition. Look at the ads for the iPod: they're fun, they're cool, they feature all sorts of (pastel-colored) people who are far funkier than anyone you or I know grooving to the licensed beat. Then consider the ads for the Kindle: the music is straight out of your local elevator. Hesitant readers aren't going to rush out to spend $299 for the reading equivalent of John Tesh. iPods sell the experience. E-readers are selling the gadget. And that's bass-ackwards.

The author of this article gets points from me for his hilarious insertions of pop culture history, like 'Informer'. Except now I want to listen to that song, which is less good and might cost me ninety-nine cents.


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