Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Apple

Author Claims Apple Won't Carry Her ebook Because It Mentions Amazon 332

Posted by samzenpus
from the not-in-our-store dept.
martiniturbide writes "Author Holly Lisle tried to publish her guide How To Think Sideways Lesson 6: How To Discover (Or Create) Your Story's Market at Apple's iBooks store. She says it was rejected first by Apple because it had 'live links' to Amazon. After she removed the links, it was rejected again because according to her: 'The problem is the CONTENT. You can't mention Amazon in your lesson.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Author Claims Apple Won't Carry Her ebook Because It Mentions Amazon

Comments Filter:
  • by Cederic (9623) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:34PM (#40811277) Journal

    I like the way her site states

    I can no longer recommend Apple as a professional distributor

    I don't see Apple acting as a professional distributor. Quite why people still support this abusive organisation I really struggle to understand.

  • by YesIAmAScript (886271) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:35PM (#40811295)

    Require extraordinary proof.

    There are plenty of iBooks already that mention Amazon.

    We have one person making a blind accusation here.

  • Odd (Score:4, Insightful)

    by mmcxii (1707574) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:39PM (#40811329)
    If I start iTunes I find books about selling on Amazon.

    I'm not saying the story isn't honest I'm just saying that there are plenty of Amazon resources available on iTunes that seems to offset what is being presented here.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:46PM (#40811419)

    I think they have a subreddit for politics as well as religion. This is /. I wish people would stop trying to turn it into reddit.

  • BS (Score:4, Insightful)

    by edelbrp (62429) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:46PM (#40811421)

    I call BS. I did a quick search here for "Amazon" on the iTunes Store and it comes up with a number of books related to publishing and marketing with Amazon including publishing eBooks for the Kindle.

  • by newcastlejon (1483695) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:48PM (#40811437)

    Maybe you can give us some examples? ...

    The burden of proof is hers. Until she tells the world exactly what Apple told her I'm inclined to treat this as a publicity stunt; all TFA has is her side of the story.

  • by Aqualung812 (959532) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:50PM (#40811467)

    This isn't extraordinary. Apple has shown (along with Microsoft's phone market and other app-store approval systems) that when you have many humans editing for content, you get sometimes stupid rejections like this one.

    Because someone at Apple rejected this app doesn't mean Apple itself rejects it as formal policy, but it might. I'm sure in the coming days we'll find out one way or another.

    However, this highlights the issue with getting approval from a centrally controlled application market where approvals are granted by many different humans with different understanding of what the rules are. Nothing is black and white.

  • by gl4ss (559668) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @05:52PM (#40811479) Homepage Journal

    Well, it wouldn't be the first time when a large online store applies different rules to different submissions.

    Happens all the time.

  • by Qwavel (733416) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:02PM (#40811575)

    The article is by Cory Doctorow, who is very well known and respected.

    I would assume he did some basic vetting of the claim - he is no fool and has a reputation to protect.

  • by Frosty Piss (770223) * on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:23PM (#40811815)

    The article is by Cory Doctorow, who is very well known and respected.

    First, it's hardly an "article", it's a single paragraph followed by a direct excerpt of the blog post by the offended author.

    Secondly, neither Doctorow nor the offended author provide any proof whatsoever. None.

    Now, this is only speculation, but perhaps Apple had an issue with the cover art, which is a rip-off of the For Dummies series of books? Publishers that copyright issues seriously.

    But, since the author has provided no evidence to support her screed, it's really a non-story.

  • by divisionbyzero (300681) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:31PM (#40811877)

    There is zero proof in her claim. Why was this posted?

  • by Reschekle (2661565) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:33PM (#40811891)

    You seem to be confused. YesIAmAScript claims that there are many books in the Apple book store that mention Amazon. If YesIAmAScript claims this then he must have knowledge and thus can tell us which books make mention of Amazon.

  • by BasilBrush (643681) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:52PM (#40812065)

    Because it's censorship. Apple is censoring the content.

    If you think an individual store choosing not to sell something is censorship, then you've demonstrated you don't know what censorship means.

    No, censorship is when anyone (government, media, newspaper delivery boy) restricts dissemination of information that they object to people knowing (tiananmen square, acta, letters from the newspaper company about not giving delivery boys tips).

    Apple is not restricting dissemination. They have no power to do so. Authors do not have the right to have their books sold in any store they chose. Declining to stock a book is not censorship, otherwise ALL bookstores are censoring every book they don't stock.

  • by PopeRatzo (965947) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:53PM (#40812075) Homepage Journal

    So does that mean that the Disney Store should be forced to sell Debbie Does Dallas if they sell books by other authors?

    You mean if I own a religious bookstore, I have to sell the Kama Sutra sex manual, "On the Road" which encourages drug use, and other vile filth? No sir. This is a free country and I should be able to decide what I wish to sell in my private business. It is not right that I should have to be forced out-of-a-job because of some stupid law that obliges me to sell items that are sinful.

    See, the problem here is you're setting up a straw man. Nobody is "forcing" Apple to sell anything. Nobody is forcing Apple out of business. Nobody is even pushing this private business to do anything it does not want.

    Instead, this woman, this author, is simply pointing out the kind of douchebag behavior that Apple has increasingly made its business model. Success through suppression of competition. Success through censorship, through lawsuits, through crushing competition. Success through stepping on small business people.

    This author is not talking about lawsuits or "there oughta be a law". She's just putting the information out there and letting people see for themselves why so many people are saying it's just not cool to own Apple products any more.

    I really don't think you're dramatic introduction of religious freedom and "sinfulness" is applicable or adds anything of value to this discussion.

  • by WaffleMonster (969671) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @06:57PM (#40812113)

    We already know Apple pulls apps that compete with their bottom line so why should anyone expect different behavior from ebooks?

    The problem in my mind is not really Apple or what apple does or does not do...It is the aggregation of power into the hands of the few with all the financial incentive in the world to leverage to the fullest.

    Expecting them not to (ab)use it seems foolishly naive.

    I vote with my purchases and encourage others to do the same.

  • by gnasher719 (869701) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @07:07PM (#40812223)

    Sounds like a misunderstanding, in which the author is trying to profit from by complaining. There are a number of approved iBooks where Amazon in the main focus, rather than just a few mentions.

    There is a paragraph in the AppStore guidelines that basically says "if your app is rejected and you complain, then we may reconsider. If you moan in public, that is not going to help." I would interpret it as "if you complain about the app store in public, then the app store will sadly learn how to live without you".

  • by Archfeld (6757) * <treboreel@live.com> on Sunday July 29, 2012 @07:29PM (#40812429) Journal

    You need to use a dictionary more often. Just because you don't like what someone else is posting doesn't make it incorrect. Apple is censoring content. It is their right to do so and sell what they wish via their marketplace, unless their censorship is based on religion, sex, or race, but just because it is legal doesn't change the fact...

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @07:32PM (#40812453)

    Popular for some, the devil for others... Rest assured some will cry bloody murder, others will call it a slander campaign... be it as it may, everyone's talking about a book nobody would have bothered to even think of taking a look at.

    Mission accomplished.

  • by cpu6502 (1960974) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @07:42PM (#40812541)

    >>>See, the problem here is you're setting up a straw man..... I really don't think you're dramatic introduction

    And I really don't think you bothered to get off your lazy ass and READ THE CONVERSATION before you replied. Let me quote it for you since you are too dense (or maybe a little kid with small brain) to follow this simple thread:

    - "The first rule of controlling a market...shut down discussion."
    ----- "Which is why there needs to be a law against censoring content in a public marketplace by a public company."
      ----- ----- "You mean if I own a religious bookstore, I have to sell the Kama Sutra sex manual, "On the Road" which encourages drug use, and other vile filth? No sir. This is a free country and I should be able to decide what I wish to sell in my private business......"

    NOW do you see? I was responding to a person who DOES INDEED want to pass a LAW and force a private bookseller to sell everything, regardless of content. And you would have KNOWN that if you bothered to take 30 seconds and READ THE POSTS before replying and demeaning other people.

  • by LordLimecat (1103839) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @07:47PM (#40812573)

    Um, you want government legislating what a private company can and cannot sell?

    Stop and think about that, and why that is an awful idea.

  • by PopeRatzo (965947) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @08:05PM (#40812723) Homepage Journal

    So you were unable to grasp his entire point: As a religious seller, he should have the choice of selling those wares he believes in.

    And this is relevant to Apple and Amazon how?

  • by whisper_jeff (680366) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @08:07PM (#40812739)

    If Cory did any basic vetting, then he failed.

    Here, try this:

    Step 1: Go to the iTunes store.
    Step 2: Search for "Amazon"
    Step 3: Ignore all titles obviously about the geographic location and take note of how many books obviously include mention of "Amazon" the company.

    Protip: One of the books available for sale via iTunes is called "Amazon.com". I could be mistaken, but I think it mentions and discusses Amazon, the company.

    Her claim is marketing BS.

  • Try and stay on top of the discussion.

    I don't include ACs in the discussion generally. They are beneath my attention threshold.

    Then it is you and not the AC, who risks looking like an ass due to ignoring context previously established by someone that chose not to log in. But it's your reputation and your choice, and you are free to make it.

  • by Taco Cowboy (5327) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @09:05PM (#40813177) Journal

    So does that mean that the Disney Store should be forced to sell Debbie Does Dallas if they sell books by other authors?

     
    Hmm... TFA was talking about being blocked by Apple because of a mention about Amazon and you jumped in with Disney being forced to carry "Debbie Does Dallas"?
     
    Isn't _ that _ quite a stretch?
     

  • by jrumney (197329) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @09:13PM (#40813237) Homepage
    It's a straw man argument. A religious bookstore is a specialist store, nobody expects them to sell books that are outside of that specialty. Apple on the other hand are presenting themselves as a general ebook seller.
  • by PseudonymousCoward (161283) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @09:32PM (#40813395)

    In my book "The Making of 'I Saw Them Ride Away'" I mentioned the great help that Amazon, and their subsidiary CreateSpace, had been in enabling the publication of my Great-Grandfather's memoir. When I submitted the manuscript for format checking, it was rejected because it mentioned "amazon.com". I had to eliminate a very complimentary sentence, at their own insistence.

    I'm sure the policy makes sense to someone.

  • by Smauler (915644) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @10:00PM (#40813555)

    I don't include ACs in the discussion generally. They are beneath my attention threshold.

    Then you're missing out. AC posts are often very good. You sound a little arrogant when you say that ACs add nothing.

    Your previous post shows you can't even tell who you're replying to, and why they have posted what they did (which most ACs can). It's currently at +5 insightful, which shows some moderators are in the same boat. That post is just 100% wrong, through and through, as anyone who had read the parent of the post you were replying to could see immediately.

    Don't get all defensive, just admit you were wrong, and carry on.

  • by Ol Olsoc (1175323) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @10:14PM (#40813639)

    This author is not talking about lawsuits or "there oughta be a law". She's just putting the information out there and letting people see for themselves why so many people are saying it's just not cool to own Apple products any more.

    I really don't think you're dramatic introduction of religious freedom and "sinfulness" is applicable or adds anything of value to this discussion.

    More likely in my jaded eye is that the story is bullshit. I read the article. Don't see anything that resembles any proof. Why wouldn't we see emails or other messages from Apple offered to show the Evil Corporations evilness? The credibility of the story is directly proportional to the readers hatred of Apple.

  • by TapeCutter (624760) on Sunday July 29, 2012 @11:29PM (#40813999) Journal

    GGP was asking for public companies to be forced to carry everything

    No they asked for "a law against censoring content in a public marketplace by a public company". You and Karlt1 interpreted that to mean every company must stock every item. You are therefore (unintentionally) using a strawman argument.

  • yes: i don't want private companies selling plutonium to anyone and i want my government to use my tax dollars to stop them

    no: i don't want private companies restricted by rules that squash competition and i want government free of the sort of meddling by large corporations that sometimes creates this vile status quo

    in other words, the idea of government legislating what a private company can and cannot sell is a large complicated concept that has many answers depending on the context

  • People keep throwing around the word "censorship" like they think they know what it means, but it's obvious they don't. Censorship is when the government restricts your speech. Even if every single one of her claims is true, she is not being censored.

    This times one million.

    I've been running into this lack of understanding of what censorship is more and more as of late it seems. This certainly doesn't come anywhere close to censorship.

    For this to rise to a level to be considered "censorship", once she found out that Apple wouldn't publish her book, she'd have to find that no other store would sell her book either. Then she would need to try to self-publish on the web, only to find that no ISP would host her content. She'd then need to try to make paper copies, only to find that none of the copy stores would be willing to do the job. She'd then need to start making her own copies on an old mimeograph, only to find men in jack-boots kicking down her door and threatening her with death for attempting to get out her message.

    THAT is censorship. This author still has thousands of other avenues to publish her work. Government thugs aren't going to break down her door to arrest her and her family to silence her.

    Want to know what censorship is? Go and see Sophie Scholl: The Final Days. That is censorship, and is something we all need to be vigilant about. A publisher choosing not to publish a book? That has happened each and every day since the invention of publishing. Just because I write a book doesn't mean that (for example) Random House must publish it, or that it's censorship if they don't.

    Find another publisher -- if the book is good, someone will pick it up (either in print or digitally). If the book is junk, self-publish. It isn't censorship until you're threatened with people with guns kicking down your door to imprison or harm yourself or your family, or to otherwise shut down your ability to publish.

    Yaz

  • by Requiem18th (742389) on Monday July 30, 2012 @04:00AM (#40815381)

    Wow, talk about blaming the victim. Don't pretend this isn't Apple's fault, in fact I don't even think this was planned, otherwise she would have complained from the moment the links were blamed.

    In a way I think this is a great opportunity to illustrate why monopolies, even popular ones are bad. Talking about popular monopolies, are you a fan of Apple? Because that was some nice brand loyalty there.

  • by KGIII (973947) on Monday July 30, 2012 @05:22AM (#40815721) Journal

    Are you retarded? The discussion is the comment made, in which they stated that there ought to be a law, and you attempting to pretend you actually understand the tenets of critical thinking.

    Now, no... There is no strawman here. The person said there ought to be a law that prevents people from censoring content in their store. That is very much like forcing the guy to put steamy sex novels in his religious store and very much wrong.

    That people feel entitled to compel people to act in certain manners completely baffles me in this day and age. Where has freedom gone? Why are we, the governed, so eager to give up our rights or the rights of others. Every single law is a restriction (for better or worse) of someones freedoms. That folks don't understand the difference between freedom and liberty may have something to do with that but is a topic for another day.

  • by Another, completely (812244) on Monday July 30, 2012 @07:20AM (#40816153)

    GGP was asking for public companies to be forced to carry everything

    No they asked for "a law against censoring content in a public marketplace by a public company". You and Karlt1 interpreted that to mean every company must stock every item. You are therefore (unintentionally) using a strawman argument.

    Sorry, but I missed your point. How do you prevent "censoring content" while still allowing stores to select content that they feel is suitable for their customers and image? If every company is not required to stock every item, how do they select what they want to sell without being accused of censoring what they didn't select?

  • by shentino (1139071) on Monday July 30, 2012 @08:02AM (#40816401)

    It's already on the books and it's called antitrust regulation.

    A lot of the "there ought to be a law" type situations only come about because the powers that be don't give a shit about enforcing laws already on the books unless it suits them.

  • Poor reasoning (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DragonWriter (970822) on Monday July 30, 2012 @12:08PM (#40818851)

    Her claim is the book was refused because it mentions Amazon.

    More precisely, her claim is that that is the reason Apple stated the second time they rejected it.

    Go to the iTunes store. Do a search for Amazon. Ignore the results about the geographic region and notice how many other books clearly and obviously mention Amazon. Take particular note, for example, of the book titled "Amazon.com" which, one would assume, is about Amazon and makes mention of the company.

    So? It wouldn't be the first time that the reasons Apple stated to the creator for rejecting one product from their online store were inconsistent with the fact that other products which would, rationally, be rejected by the same rule had already been accepted in the same store.

    After you do this basic level of investigation, one can only be left to assume that there's either some key part of this story missing and/or she is doing this to generate attention for her book as a marketing ploy (driving people to buy her book on Amazon, most likely).

    Well, no. In order to reach that conclusion based on the evidence you cited you have to first assume, additionally:
    1. That Apple's stated reasons for rejecting a product are always accurate and complete,
    2. That Apple's standards in accepting products in its online store are consistent.

    Unless you assume both of those are true, the fact that other products appear in the store that would not be expected to if the reasons they allegedly stated for rejecting the product in question had been applied across the aboard is not evidence against the allegation that they rejected the product and gave the reason stated.

The economy depends about as much on economists as the weather does on weather forecasters. -- Jean-Paul Kauffmann

Working...