Major Newspapers Embrace Amazon Kindle In Awkward Hug: Right Direction, Wrong Move

Posted: May 6, 2009 in Newspapers, Social Media
Tags: , , , , ,

Today, Tech Bloggers are playing Kids at the Candy Store, as they attend Amazon’s Press Conference (Kindle DX Launch), Tweeting, Live-Blogging, and generally soaking up all the Kindleness they can.

But what caught my attention is the Amazon Press Release (  announcing that several major Newspapers will be offering a subsidized Kindle DX to interested parties…BUT ONLY TO THOSE WHO LIVE WHERE HOME DELIVERY IS NOT AVAILABLE!!! WTF

Amazon Kindle - Newspaper Launch Press Release

Amazon Kindle - Newspaper Launch Press Release

The New York Times, The Boston Globe, and The Washington Post to Launch Trials Offering Kindle DX to Subscribers Who Live in Areas Where Home Delivery is Not Available

Yes, Congratulations are in order. Newspapers are starting to catch on. But this half-assed move won’t take advantage of everything the kindle can offer these publishers.

  1. Printing Costs – If they made the Kindle Available to ALL subscribers they could cut down on the enormous financial drain entailed by the printing process, not to mention all the trees they’d save. One large initial cost of supplying reduced priced Kindles to subscribers vs. the prolonged costs of printing and distribution – I’d say this one’s a no-brainer, but that’s just me, I’m no financial guru.
  1. Mobility – The New York Times is launching their Adobe Run Times Reader 2.0 desktop application, which is all fine and dandy, but isn’t conducive to our mobile lifestyle. People need a compromise between reading the news on their Blackberry/iPhone and traditional print papers. That’s where the Kindle comes in…something we can use on the bus or the train…without squinting.

In short – Newspapers and the Kindle are made for each other. I don’t know if this quasi-partnership is just a testing phase for a bigger move (which I really hope it is), or if these Newspaper Execs still don’t get it.

Thank you Rob Pegoraro for bringing this to my attention. And stay tuned for his coverage on the topic for the Washington Post at


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