Amazon: Stop Trying To Be Cute

When I was a kid and my Mom asked me to do something, I would try to be cute and do it different. If she asked me to mow the lawn, I’d mow it in circles instead of rows. Sounded fun, but it looked like crap. Instead of walking my dog, I tied her to the handlebars of my bike. The dog got more exercise and I didn’t have to work very hard. Unfortunately, she pulled so hard she ripped the handle bars off the bike. No more bike for me. In the 70’s that was tragic, my bike was my life. To my mom “getting cute” was over thinking something that already worked and screwing it up by trying to do it differently.

My Mom’s classic line: “Stop trying to be cute and just do it right”.


If given the chance, I think that ‘s what my Mom would say to Amazon. “Stop trying to be cute and just do it right”.

Amazon just announced their inclusion of all blogs into their Kindle store. This is great news if you author a blog. Kindle owners can now access your blog from their device. Making all blogs available on the Kindle was smart. Here is where Amazon isn’t too smart and where my mother would say they are trying to be cute. Amazon is going to charge for blogs. Kindle owners will have to pay $1.99 a month, per blog. That’s over $100 bucks a year to follow just 5 blogs on a Kindle. Aren’t blogs free? Why do I have to pay Amazon to read on their device, what I can read on any other device for FREE?

I think this a big mistake on Amazon’s part. I’m seriously looking at buying a Kindle. One reason I’m drawn to it is for blog reading. But not if I have to pay to read them.

There are too many other ways to access the blogs I read for free, to find value in paying to read them on a Kindle. Blogs are free, to get cute and try to change that is foolish.

I think the value of the Kindle isn’t to the readers of blogs, but to the authors. I won’t pay 1.99 a month to read a blog on a Kindle, but as an author, I would pay 5-10 bucks per month to have this blog available to Kindle users.

The problem with Amazons strategy is there is no blog reader market today. Readers don’t pay for blogs, the authors do. There IS an author market however. Authors pay designers to create themes, authors pay hosting fees, and in some cases authors pay to market their blogs. There is a blog author market.

Trying to create a blog reader market, where one doesn’t exist, doesn’t make sense. Readers don’t pay in any way to read a blog. They don’t pay to access, they don’t pay to read, the don’t pay to share. Why try to change this? Amazon should target the authors. They already pay. If you sell enough Kindles, make it easy to for people find and access blogs, the authors will pay. I know I would.

Trying to get people to pay $10-$100’s of dollars a year for something they’re currently getting for free is what Mom calls . . . “trying to be cute”.

Amazon, just mow the lawn in rows, it’ll get done faster and look better.