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"walls of the city" logo conceptualized by Oleg Volk and executed by Linoge. Logo is © "walls of the city".

the well finally ran dry

Well this news gives me a rather impressive sad:

“Old” bundles containing books that have already been published will no longer be available for bundle-priced purchase. (Already-purchased ones should still be available for download, though it is possible some books may need to be removed. Some books may need to be removed from the Baen Free Library as well; Toni hopes to get advance notice when such removals are necessary, but recommends backing them up while you can.)

[...]

Toni also writes it is unlikely there will be further Baen CD releases bound into hardcover books. “The CDs were in part to train people up to use ebooks. Mission accomplished, there.” Furthermore, the Fifth Imperium Baen CD archive has removed the directly-browseable versions of the Baen CD files it used to offer, breaking many inbound links (including those from my Honor Harrington reviews here), though it continues (at the moment) to make the contents available as zipped and ISO files (though may remove those at some future time as well).

I will not lie; I have read probably half of what is floating around inside that Fifth Imperium link… But I have also purchased more than a few Baen books precisely because they got me hooked by way of their "gateway" books made freely available to the public.

Now… now we will be back in a world where e-books regularly cost more than hardcopies of the same, which has never made a whit of sense to me. Apparently the Baen Free Library is going to stick around – with modifications to its titles so as to not conflict with the Kindle contract – but given how infrequently it has been added to recently, I would go ahead and count on it being back-burnered for the foreseeable future.

In the end, Baen’s authors getting better exposure and royalties is a good thing, but I have to wonder what the cost is going to be. Me, I am going to go ahead and download those ISOs while I can…

(Also, copying DRM-free, not-from-Amazon files over to Kindles is "hard"? Give me a frakking break.)

(Found by way of Larry Correia, who is understandably happy at the news.)

13 comments to the well finally ran dry

  • Lazy Bike Commuter

    Don’t even need to copy files to the Kindle, just email them to Amazon and they show up as if by magic. I think someone hasn’t looked into it very closely.

  • Lazy Bike Commuter

    @ Lazy Bike Commuter:

    Oh, I guess they charge for emailing books to non-Fire devices. That’s a bit on the ridiculous side.

  • Larry’s probably happy mostly because of how often people ask “WHY AIN’T YORE BOOKS ON MAH KINDLE?!?!?”

    People are dumb.

  • @ Lazy Bike Commuter: They did not used to charge for non-Fire devices… that is rather annoying, given that we prefer the e-ink screens for actual book reading. Hm.

    @ bluesun: Yeah, I cannot imagine how many of those emails he received in a day…

  • Arg.

    I understand their reasoning, and I figured it was just a matter of time, but, ARG!

    Sigh.

    Off to go mass download books from Baen……

  • BTW, for folks using Kindle products I highly recommend Calibre, no need to pay Amazon to get your books onto your Kindle: http://manual.calibre-ebook.com/faq.html#how-do-i-use-app-with-my-android-phone-tablet-or-kindle-fire-hd

  • I’m not happy about the price increases – ebooks should cost at least a little less than the dead tree versions – but at least they’re staying DRM-free, and it’s not affecting the availability of e-ARC’s. And getting on with Amazon (and B&N, if that works out), plus the 25% increase in ebook royalties, should hopefully attract more authors and expand the number of DRM-free ebooks that are available through legal channels.

  • Matt

    Dammit. I was wondering what the hell had happened to the Free Library since it went from three pages of books to one overnight. I’ve found a lot of authors and series there that I very well might not have read otherwise.

    At least they’re not putting DRM on the books. Guess it’s time to find some space to put a few gigs of ISOs.

  • @ Ruth: Join the club… Fifth Imperium’s throughput is getting slower and slower as the days wear on and more people find out about this.

    Thanks for the Calibre suggestion – will look into it.

    @ Jake: That, right there, is part of the reason I have never really gotten onboard with the e-book revolution – I patently refuse to pay more for an electronic copy of a book than I would for a hardcopy. Granted, if I were still being deployed or something, I would make an exception (Kindles are insanely small, after all), but that current pricing scheme is just ridiculous.

    @ Matt: Download the “CD” version if you do not want to have to break out an ISO reader every time you want to get to a book.

  • Linoge wrote:

    @ Ruth: Join the club… Fifth Imperium’s throughput is getting slower and slower as the days wear on and more people find out about this.
    Thanks for the Calibre suggestion – will look into it.
    @ Jake: That, right there, is part of the reason I have never really gotten onboard with the e-book revolution – I patently refuse to pay more for an electronic copy of a book than I would for a hardcopy. Granted, if I were still being deployed or something, I would make an exception (Kindles are insanely small, after all), but that current pricing scheme is just ridiculous.
    @ Matt: Download the “CD” version if you do not want to have to break out an ISO reader every time you want to get to a book.

    People have been busy downloading.

    The site has been experiencing heavy traffic since the news got out.

    A normal day would be 15-25GB of traffic, it’s been over 150GB/day since the third and (so far) peaked at over 550GB in one day.

    That’s about eight months’ worth of downloading in under two weeks.

  • … Wow. I guess people are getting while the getting is good :).

    Thanks for hosting all that data :).

  • Wow, hope your servers are up to it! And definetly thank your for hosting it all!