Tuesday, 29 April 2008

BitTorrent + books = new distribution model?

Not really a new post, but more of an update. TorrentFreak are carrying a story on how authors are increasingly turning to the BitTorrent distribution platform as a way of generating interest which may equate to sales. There's a nice little mention of the difference between the book publishing industry's business model post web-piracy boom in comparison to the music industry's response which is relevant to my MAC281 students doing the first essay on piracy.

I found it a little funny (and not at all ironic) to see Matt Mason's book, The Pirate's Dilemma, appear over on Mininova the day after I ordered a copy of the paperback from Amazon UK (released on May 1st, or May Day, the day often used by protest movements following its association with International Workers' Day and pagan celebrations). Be warned: using the torrent to access copyright material may not be legal in your country.

I'll grab the torrent as well I think. It's the reverse of the new mantra where torrents are meant to stimulate hard copy purchases - I've bought the book and now I'm going to download the torrent. By the way, you can read Chapter 1 of Mason's book legitimately over on his site. If you like what you read, it's always worth a purchase especially at about £8/$16.

NB: MAC281 students attempting the aforementioned question may want to check out this article by Mason too. It deals with the crisis in the entertainment industry post-piracy. It's also where Mason suggests his book may appear as a torrent a full 3 months before it actually happened.

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