Stumbled across an interesting post over at Top 10 Tech Web Tips last week, titled Adobe And Yahoo Partner [To] End Scammy Ebook Deals–
Yahoo and Adobe have decided to work together to provide PDF documents that will run advertising within those PDF documents. This will enable publishers to receive advertising revenue through their virally circulated PDF documents. That is a significant advancement and could decrease publishers needs to sell those same PDF documents upfront.
Valid publishers with good contents won’t need to sell their documents if they can earn advertising revenues through viral distribution. This could then thin the herd of the number of publishers that actually sell e-books, and that will decrease the consumers desire to purchase e-books as the remaining e-books and the market will be even more likely to be scamming material not worth buying.
This is a brilliant idea, whose time came quite some time ago. Frankly, although I never thought of it, I am shocked that it hasn’t been done prior to this. It does have one major stumbling block at the moment: eBook authors must submit their books to Adobe who will insert the ads themselves, then return the book. Why can’t Yahoo simply provide its publishers with an eBook code or even an Acrobat plugin, that allows the ads to be displayed? Involving Adobe in every eBook creation seems a lot more than simply cumbersome, it’s a huge hassle. Still, I’m sure they’ll get that minor detail worked out soon.
It’s wonderful to see major corporations do what they can, to provide the market with the solutions it is seeking. If only Google would return to taking the same approach. I’ll conclude with the conclusion of the original article I cited above-
As a side note, I think it’s illustrative to take a look at Yahoo’s response to the problem of e-books that scamp the people that buy them. There’s definitely a market in e-books and PDF documents in general. Yahoo chose not to penalize people that sell these scamming e-books, but instead they chose to create a solution that provides an incentive for the marketplace to use better practices. They have opted to give a reward for doing things better as opposed to penalizing people that do things in a way that is detrimental towards readers.
Google on the other hand has recently chosen to attack publishers when they engage in publishing behavior that Google doesn’t like, especially when that behavior threatens Google’s monopoly. Google could have chosen to offer up a better solution instead of attacking publishers, but chose to attack first and protect their monopoly.