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Wired article: free online access to books increase sales? (1 Viewer)



Wired magazine had an interesting writing-related article today about the 9/11 Commision Report. This 516 report was available online for free, and it was still able to be one of the nation's top nonfiction best sellers. It said more the 600,000 people have purchased the paperback version of this report.

The article mentions how this might convince publishers and authors to release their books online for free in hopes that it will spur people into buying the paper book.

One author interviewed for this article gave his opinions about this:
If people get free access to a novel, they're more likely to begin reading it. And once they begin reading, provided it holds their attention, they'll probably buy the book.

Any experiences or opinions about this?


Very true, I suspect. Reading any lengthy piece online is an uncomfortable endevour - if I was to start reading a book online and enjoy it, I'd almost certainly buy the paperback edition.


Senior Member
I'd probably provide the first two or three chapters of any book I wrote online, if given the option. At that point, someone will have decided if they want to read the whole thing or not. Like you said, most people would prefer to have it in their hands anyway.


I like the idea.

I don't know someone that will completely read a whole 516 page book online. Mainly because it will hurt their eyes. :D

Owning or Having the book is more convenient, you'll be able to read it on your bed etc.

I like the idea.


as much as I like to read, I don't think that I would be able to sit and read a book online, I prefer to have book in hand, that way I can set it down to get other things done and go back to it. I would however, read and enjoy at least the first chapter online. Just as many authors are putting the first chapter of a new book at the end of one. Grabs your attention so that you await the sale.