EXTRA ETHER: Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Banning

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Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Banning

A BitTorrent blog post proudly proclaims: “It’s poised to be the most banned book in U.S. history. The 4-Hour Chef is one of the first titles underneath Amazon’s new publishing imprint; boycotted by U.S. booksellers, including Barnes & Noble.”

Laura Hazard Owen

Laura Hazard Owen says that a real book banning is more than a 4-Hour affair.

In Hey, Tim Ferriss: Book banning isn’t a marketing gimmick at GigaOM’s paidContent, she writes:

So is Barnes & Noble banning The Four-Hour Chef because of its controversial content? Not so much. Ferriss’ book is simply one of several that Barnes & Noble will not stock in its stores because it is published by Amazon.

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Timothy Ferriss

But Ferriss is talking right back to her:

I view things through a different lens. I think the implications of this boycott or ban — choose the word you prefer — are larger than people realize.

What we’re looking at is an interesting question. Yes, this corporate combat is playing out on the scarred battlefield of the digital dynamic: Barnes and Noble, like most booksellers, is struggling for its footing as Amazon’s digital supremacy and customer-service battering ram punch bigger and bigger holes in the fortress walls of old publishing.

 

But even if we all stood atop a clover-covered hill of peace at the moment, gazing down on a more cordial, pastoral colloquy between Owen and Ferriss, the issue would resonate with worthwhile urgency in our business-dominated era.

  • agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, Tools of Change, O'Reilly Media, author platform, blog, blogging, journalism, Authors Launch, TOC Authors, Author (R)evolution Day, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, FutureBook, Laura Hazard Owen, Tim Ferriss, Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch, paidContent, GigaOM, The 4-Hour Chef, The 4-Hour Body, The 4-Hour Workweek, Amazon, Barnes and NobleWhat, actually, constitutes a “book banning?”
  • If a bookstore refuses to sell on the grounds of a business dispute, as is the case here, is a “ban” in place?
  • Indeed, what is being “banned” here is not Ferriss, not “Timothy,” as he’s known on his book covers, nor his writings or sometimes controversial lifestyle recommendations, nor his eagerly photographed 4-Hour Body, nor his assertion that one can be successful with a mere 4-Hour Workweek.

That’s the problem. There is no Girolamo Savonarola in the room. The Friar of 15th-century Florence might have burned Ferriss at a 4-Hour Stake at the first baring of those pecs and external obliques. But this “banning” is not ideological.

And Owen is questioning the use of the term by the wunderkind bestseller.

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This is the ad image BitTorrent is using to promote its “4-Hour Project” bundling deal with Tim Ferriss on Tuesday, launch day for The 4-Hour Chef.

If anybody can rally BitTorrent’s 160-million-strong “people-powered network,” it’s the articulate Ferriss. At 35, he’s a guy’s guy whose eloquence doesn’t always jibe with his game-the-system shtick.

 

He writes to Owen, in answer to her article (she has included his response), first with a vision of more trouble in Digital City:

If this book fails due to a retail stonewall, I can tell you for a fact that more than a dozen A-list authors I know will hit pause on plans for publishing innovation for the next few years.

Next he follows with respect for our icons mentioned by Owen in her piece:

Is The 4-Hour Chef the same as Huckleberry Finn?  Of course not, and I never implied that it was.

Then he declines to stand down:

But do I view stifling innovation and free speech (through distribution or otherwise) as a malevolent thing? Yes. Regardless of the motive (moral, economic, etc.), the outcome is the same: regress instead of progress. And regress snowballs quickly. At the end of the day, I want people to think about boycotting and banning, both historically and moving forward. The fact that you (Owen) wrote a piece about precisely that — raising awareness and stimulating conversation — is a great thing.That public discourse is one of my goals.

agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, Tools of Change, O'Reilly Media, author platform, blog, blogging, journalism, Authors Launch, TOC Authors, Author (R)evolution Day, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, FutureBook, Laura Hazard Owen, Tim Ferriss, Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch, paidContent, GigaOM, The 4-Hour Chef, The 4-Hour Body, The 4-Hour Workweek, Amazon, Barnes and NobleTold you he’s good. I like this debate and I like Ferriss’ ready wit as much as I like Owen’s robust concern.

It’s good, really, to find a self-marketer of his magnitude waiting when someone as adroit as Owen comes looking for him.

She’s way too smart to leave home without her own rationale. Here’s her quick recitation of what normally rises (or falls) to the level of recognized “banning”:

Huckleberry Finn, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, To Kill a Mockingbird: Those are among the titles that schools and libraries have most commonly banned over the years. An Illinois school district banned a book this year because it included a reference to gay families. And Bibles and Korans are still burned by religious groups around the world.

Not a lot of folks would run at a phalanx of unassailable examples like that. But Ferriss does.

 

And Owen isn’t toying with her target here. She has perfect pitch for what sounds to her like a sales-gimmicky misappropriation of the term “banned.”

At the same time, you don’t have to agree with Ferriss to realize that for a guy launching a book on Tuesday subtitled “The Simple Path to Cooking Like a Pro, Learning Anything, and Living the Good Life,” this huckster brings a sweet intelligence to his own defense.

They’re a good match, these two, and we can thank them for the chance to think this out.

 | | |

Let’s look at how the Owen-Ferriss standoff developed Friday (the 16th of November), four days prior to the launch of Ferriss’ bookstore-“banned” book.

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Ingrid Lunden

In her coverage of the promotion at TechCrunch, Ingrid Lunden (a former paidContent colleague of Owen’s) wrote:

Necessity, they say, is the mother of invention, and a stalemate between Amazon and big retailers, including Barnes & Noble, over the sale of books from the online giant’s publishing imprint is giving a fillip to BitTorrent — once a hotbed of piracy, and now a straight-laced and legal content distribution network — as a platform for marketing books.

Lunden’s write-up, With Amazon Publishing Stonewalled By Retailers, Tim Ferriss Taps BitTorrent To Market His New Book, not only reminds us all that BitTorrent is no longer a pirate ship, but also that it characterizes its user-to-user network as comprising “more users than Hulu, Netflix and Spotify combined.”

If that doesn’t have you sitting up yet, try it this way: Lunden reports that BitTorrent claims to drive “between 20% and 40% of all Internet traffic.” Ferriss doesn’t play for pennies.

 

And BitTorrent, she points out:

agent, author, books, digital, ebooks, Jane Friedman, Porter Anderson, publisher, publishing, Writing on the Ether, Tools of Change, O'Reilly Media, author platform, blog, blogging, journalism, Authors Launch, TOC Authors, Author (R)evolution Day, Publishing Perspectives, Ether for Authors, Ed Nawotka, FutureBook, Laura Hazard Owen, Tim Ferriss, Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch, paidContent, GigaOM, The 4-Hour Chef, The 4-Hour Body, The 4-Hour Workweek, Amazon, Barnes and Noble…has been building up a marketing business it calls Bundles, in which it offers users content related to a recent launch of an entertainment or media brand. It looks like Bundles have mainly been used for music launches for groups like Counting Crows, Pretty Lights and Death Grips.

This time instead of music, it’s Bundling Ferriss. Lunden writes:

According to a BitTorrent blog post announcing the news, to coincide with the book being launched on November 20, BitTorrent users, “will get exclusive access to media from Tim: content from the book, as well as unpublished material. We’ll be distributing the writer’s process: the photos, drafts, videos and recipes that shaped Tim’s journey. And we’ll be asking users to support Tim and the Amazon imprint.”

 

In an important clarification for the many Amazon-bashers of our realm, Lunden writes:

A BitTorrent spokesperson says that this deal is directly with Ferriss himself, not Amazon, so it’s not clear whether there will be more Amazon books coming through this particular marketing channel.

So, no, this isn’t Seattle’s work. Nevertheless, if we go back one quote, we can hear that call-of-the-charities language that has triggered Owen’s alarm: “Support Tim and the Amazon imprint.”

It has that “come on out” tone we’re going to hear soon from Toys for Tots, right? It’s really another way of saying “buy my book.”

And that’s what has Owen donning her flak jacket.

| | |

In her write at paidContent, she goes back to the original announcement from B&N of its intention to keep books from Amazon’s fledgling New Harvest imprint off its shelves. As she reported in February, in Barnes & Noble: We Will Not Carry Amazon Publishing Titles in Our Stores, the big bookstore chain stated:

“Our decision is based on Amazon’s continued push for exclusivity with publishers, agents and the authors they represent. These exclusives have prohibited us from offering certain ebooks to our customers. Their actions have undermined the industry as a whole and have prevented millions of customers from having access to content.”

What’s more, Owen writes:

Readers can still order Amazon titles from Barnes & Noble’s website and most independent bookstores will order them if readers ask.

 

To Owen, Ferriss’ BitTorrent “project” is a wrongful use of censorship’s image for the purpose of getting people talking.

Ferriss doesn’t dodge her point. He turns it around and marches it right back to her:

I’d be remiss not to point out: booksellers use banned books as a marketing gimmick every year as a matter of course. Yes, I’m using the media to highlight what I view as a serious fork in the road for content creators.

And that’s a worthy point, too. How does a bookseller — Barnes and Noble or another outfit — account for the fact that refusing to carry certain books in a business protest actually hurts the authors through lost sales? We may not need to cry for Ferriss, who’s more than able to take care of himself. But what of other less successful authors caught in the crossfire of the B&N-Amazon skirmish?

 

And what of readers? Of customer service? Owen’s right that you can order the Ferriss book online from B&N. But what of consumers who head down to the local store to pick it up? They hear, “Oh, we’re not carrying that book.”

Do staffers on the floor at a B&N tell customers why The 4-Hour Chef is not in the store? If so, how do they characterize it? Do they explain that the author is not the problem? That Ferriss is caught in a fight with another retailer, a contretemps not of his making?

 

In closing her sally, Owen raises the fearful image of Bebelplatz in Berlin. It’s the site of the May 1933 burning by Hitler’s SS of what is said to have been some 20,000 books, something many of us can’t imagine without thinking of Fahrenheit 451.

Owen cites the text chosen to memorialize the Nazis’ fiery stupidity. It takes its line from Heinrich Heine. As Fra Savonarola could have told them:

“Where books are burned, in the end people will burn.”

And Owen then takes one last look at the Ferriss-BitTorrent effort. She sees no comparison:

The disruptors who do speak out for Ferriss won’t be risking personal harm. They won’t be standing up against free speech. Ferriss approached Amazon for a book deal and in four days, it will be published. That’s not exactly censorship.

 

Ferriss hasn’t run out of stones to throw, either, however:

If anyone is guilty of using “banned books” as a gimmick, it’s booksellers themselves.

| | |

A quick look at comments on Owen’s post shows what a joyless, even bitter environment surrounds this debate.

“Nothing is more irritating than faux victim-hood,” writes one.

“I would think the best response to a stupid marketing gimmick would be to ignore it,” writes another commenter, publishing blogger Nate Hoffelder. “Any post on this topic is a win by default for Ferriss.”

Owen responds: “It’s not really my job as a journalist to either help or hinder Ferriss’ sales. I’m sure this post could lead to some people buying his book and some people not wanting to (and I doubt it’d change a lot of minds on either side). Regardless, it’s worth writing about because it exposes a major rift in the publishing industry right now, and it’s my job to report on that. So I did.”

Another reader widens still further the term “ban”: “Amazon ‘bans’ books all the time. When publishers don’t agree to their burdensome terms they remove the buy buttons.”

And so now, Ethernaut, we turn to you.

Maybe in a society so fixated on economic issues, a retail move against a given product can be called a banning. Or maybe to call it that is simply trading one sales ploy for another and trampling a more important concept in the process.

What do you think? Can a corporate-competitive move like Barnes and Noble’s refusal to carry Amazon New Harvest print editions be called a form of book banning, as Tim Ferriss asserts? Or is Laura Hazard Owen right that the term’s association with censorship in culture and history is too important for it to be applied to a commercial shakedown?

| | |

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Porter Anderson (@Porter_Anderson) is a journalist and consultant in publishing. He's The Bookseller's (London) Associate Editor in charge of The FutureBook. He's a featured writer with Thought Catalog (New York), which carries his reports, commentary, and frequent Music for Writers interviews with composers and musicians. And he's a regular contributor of "Provocations in Publishing" with Writer Unboxed. Through his consultancy, Porter Anderson Media, Porter covers, programs, and speaks at publishing conferences and other events in Europe and the US, and works with various players in publishing, such as Library Journal's SELF-e, Frankfurt Book Fair's Business Club, and authors. You can follow his editorial output at Porter Anderson Media, and via this RSS link.

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33 Comments on "EXTRA ETHER: Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Banning"

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Anonymous
Anonymous
3 years 9 months ago

Of course a retailer boycott isn’t the same as banning. It’s ridiculous to suggest it is–and I say that as an Amazon Publishing author whose book doesn’t appear to be stocked even at smaller independents. I wish to God my book *was* banned–then people might be interested in it. As it is, it’s simply invisible. What makes this really galling is that I didn’t sign with Amazon–Amazon bought my publisher shortly before my book came out. Basically, I’m collateral damage.

Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Good God, my sympathies for your plight — truly caught in the crossfire, especially when your publisher is an acquisition! Thanks for reading and dropping a line. I suppose the kindest thing I can say is: “May your book be banned at B&N!” Seriously, all the best with a bad situation. There’s a slim hope that enough exposure of the B&N boycott of Amazon printed books via Tim Ferriss’ visibility might help cause a change in this standoff. It’s the sort of thing that’s slow to reach the public until a major figure like our 4-Hour friend gets on it.… Read more »
Anonymous
Anonymous
3 years 9 months ago

I agree completely, as another author in the exact situation–one who signed with another publisher and whose contract was purchased by ACP. This boycott hurts authors, but it is not a banning. And yes, banning would at least bring the book to the public eye, which is exactly what Ferris is using the term to do here.

Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Yeah, and to some degree, I’m not sorry to see the visibility of all this raised by Ferriss’ high profile — whether we want to side with him or B&N or Amazon or what, this standoff is the kind of thing I’d rather the public know more about. The readers are stakeholders here, too, and inter-corporate warfare like this between B&N and Amazon can be missed by laypeople busy with their own lives unless something like this brings it to light. So this will be interesting to watch play out. And we don’t have to wait long, Ferriss book releases… Read more »
Teresa Robeson
3 years 9 months ago
Ferris lost any sympathy I may have had when he trotted out the tired “At the end of the day” cliche. 😉 Joking aside, I am inclined to agree with Owen that this is not “banning” in the traditional sense of the word. I have to admire Ferriss for his ability to seize opportunities to propel his interests, and like you, I agree with some of what he says. Then too, as the landscape of publishing keeps changing, the definition of “traditional” is more amorphous, and is shifting with evolving industry. But, that said, this is not a banning based… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Hey, @skepticgal:disqus Thanks for the great note and for reading us here today! I think your assessment of this probably matches many folks’ — and you notice that in his response to Owen, Ferriss, himself, mentions both “boycott” and “ban”; it may be seen by many as more the former than the latter. It’s interesting that many people have such strong feelings about Ferriss. Those who don’t care for him may well miss the point that he isn’t even the target, really, of the move that will keep his book out of so many stores. That’s inter-corporate warfare between two… Read more »
Teresa Robeson
3 years 9 months ago

Porter, your Dalai Lama scenario would, indeed, be a fascinating test (and I’m sure I’ll read it here (or at your Publishing Perspectives site) first if that happens). 🙂 I’m of the opinion that retaliation and revenge tactics never end well; I just hope not too many innocent people will suffer as a result of pettiness. I’ll stay tuned for your updates!

Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago

Fantastic, Teresa, you’re always most welcome on the Ether and do keep joining in the convo, great to have your insights! (Check Ferriss’ blog today, quite interesting how he’s playing it: http://ow.ly/fsnrV

Michelle Witte
3 years 9 months ago
It’s highly doubtful that Ferriss knows anything about the process of book buyers and how they decide which books to carry in their stores. Not every book from every publisher gets picked up by Barnes & Noble. I worked for an indie publisher whose sales staff worked hard every season to get as many books placed in B&N stores as they could. For new startup publishers, it’s even more difficult, as most of their books don’t get broad national distribution in stores. Do any of these decisions constitute banning? Hardly. That people are buying this lame call to stop book… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Hello, Michelle Witte Great to have your input, thank you for reading the column and taking the time to comment. You’re right, of course, that a bookstore has (a) a perfect right not to carry a book and (b) many reasons it makes decisions to carry and not carry. This, however, is a case of a acknowledged and declared refusal by Barnes and Noble (and may independent bookstores) of print books from Amazon. This is a very small number of books. The Amazon Publishing venture (based in New York) has produced only a handful of books so far (it’s quite… Read more »
Michelle Witte
3 years 9 months ago
I appreciate your thoughts and agree that it is only part of a much larger issue. However, in this case I see it as a lack of forethought on his and his agent’s part. Like you stated, B&N’s position on this issue is clear and widely known. If the author or agent knew this and still went ahead in publishing with Amazon, it’s not so much being caught in a fight as it is poor decision-making, as their evaluation of the consequences in signing with Amazon was rather poor. To cry foul, then, is disingenuous in the least, and possibly… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Hey, @twitter-18925580:disqus Very sorry to hear about your experience with the bookstore, Michelle, this is the dark side of so much of the disruption right now — you get a terrible look at why they tell us fairness has nothing to do with business at times like this. I really regret the loss of your store. I worry, too, about the overall effects of extreme discounting. As I was writing recently about a column from Jonny Geller in London, I was pleased to see him calling on readers to risk paying for a book again. I’m not sure why we’re… Read more »
Laura Kinsale
Laura Kinsale
3 years 9 months ago
Amazon’s casual, retaliatory use of its database to remove buy buttons is in fact the *central* issue here, not a side light. I deeply doubt this Ferriss character, whiz kid though he may be, came up with the “Oh save me I’ve been banned!” squeal all on his lonesome. Amazon can’t say it, that would be TOO hypocritical, so they put him up as a sock puppet. It’s called Blaming the Victim, and it’s the first defense for bullies. The same way I doubt the Justice Department just happened across “price fixing” among publishers all by its sweet little self.… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Well, Laura, It’s been wonderful of you to share your high regard for Amazon with us, LOL. Seriously, thanks for your comment. Having been a journalist since about the time of the Magna Carta, I tend to hang on to things we can confirm, not doubts and suspicions. And we, of course, have no evidence that Amazon has had a hand in Tim Ferriss’ arrangement with BitTorrent, nor with the Department of Justice lawsuits. And we don’t actually know the details of why buy buttons are removed when it happens, so a very large part of the story on those… Read more »
Laura Kinsale
Laura Kinsale
3 years 9 months ago
LOL, I’ll give you that there’s no evidence about Ferriss and the DOJ, that’s just my personal paranoid conspiracy theory :P. But Porter, are you really maintaining that we don’t “know” why Amazon has removed buy buttons? It’s been reported in numerous places, including the NYT, that they’ve done it during contractual disputes with publishers such as McMillan, Hachette and Bloomsbury in the UK. Whether or not they have openly stated that this is to indicate their power to control distribution for those publishers, the timing certainly fits the facts. It’s sent shockwaves through the industry every time it’s happened,… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago

Thanks again, @ffd686675d53af1a0c25a55f7900ea4e:disqus

I can agree with you that Tim Ferriss is certainly responsible for his own business decisions. And remember that he has told Laura Hazard Owen that if he were Barnes and Noble, he might do the same thing it’s doing.

So take heart. You may find agreement in surprising places. 🙂

Cheers, and thanks again,

-p.

Porter Anderson

Jamie Clarke Chavez
3 years 9 months ago

For me the real question (sorry, y’all—this really is a good discussion) is whether I want to buy a book about cooking from Tim Ferriss. Answer: No.

Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago

And the consumer has spoken. 🙂

Thanks for the input, @twitter-364962406:disqus

Come by our Ether(s) often, super to have you!
-p.
@twitter-39469575:disqus

Jane Friedman
3 years 9 months ago
A philosophical point comes to mind. Some people fight to ensure we don’t live in an Orwellian, 1984 world, e.g., they fight the banning of books, they fight those who deprive us of information, they fight those who conceal the truth from us, and they fight anything that would hold us captive. But I think we’re more in danger of living in a Huxley world. What’s the point in banning a book when no one bothers to read them? What’s the point of truth telling when it’s drowned out in a sea of misinformation and irrelevance? The lack of distribution… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Hey, Jane, Thanks so much for this input. You’re capturing the cold cynicism of Huxley’s “brave” new world in which, of course, cowardice calls itself bravery. And if we think of the result of B&N’s corporate fistfight with Amazon as a type of “forced disappearance” of intellectual property, the thing that I think would bother me about it (if I were Ferriss) is the assumption on many readers’ parts that something was wrong with me as an author or with my book. It would be bad enough “to be vanished” from view but even worse, in my opinion, to be… Read more »
Tom Bentley
Tom Bentley
3 years 9 months ago
Porter, from one angle, it seems to be a case of B&N shooting itself in the cash register, since Ferriss readers (and new readers created by the teapot tempest) will, in the main, find the venue(s) where his book is available. As for Ferriss volleying about a cayenne-laden term like “banned,” I don’t blame him all that much. I think it’s less cynical and more marketing, which he knows a lot about. And he does keep 4 hours’ worth of boyish charm around for interviews about the matter. But he can afford to be charming, since he’s already in a… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Hey, @google-d1ccfd8d9fd3c2b040b0bb1f0db6b2bd:disqus Sorry for the delay there, had to focus on tomorrow’s new Ether for Authors at Publishing Perspectives — still a few things to work out in my process among the Ethers (Writing on the Ether still runs here on Thursdays) — it’s feeling a bit like taking the vapors this week, lol. But your comments are not only right on the money but also nicely turned, many thanks for such a comely comment. I do agree that B&N is letting itself in for a considerable miss on holiday-shopping dollars. Ferriss simply doesn’t sell a few books, at least… Read more »
Patricia V. Davis
Patricia V. Davis
3 years 9 months ago
First of all, I loved all the comments here, and I love this blog, Porter and Jane with it. (Just felt the need to say that!) Tom Bentley’s comment and Jane’s are right on the money. And I have to add my own story: Last month, I found out that my second book, “The Diva Doctrine” had been “banned” by certain liberal-leaning reading groups who had embraced my first book, “Harlot’s Sauce.” It had been crossed off as a potential club choice not because of its content, but because it had been published by a Mormon publisher and Mormons are… Read more »
Porter Anderson
3 years 9 months ago
Hi, @374480ac16bd035062d2a31171e1ff71:disqus Thanks for the terribly kind words, and for the good thoughts on all this. I do think that there may be some sour grapes in the reactions of some to Ferriss’ ability to find new ways to market his book in the face of Barnes and Noble declining to carry his book. Success always draws a lot of envy, and Ferriss has been very successful AND unafraid to use that. I also think there’s a lot to be said for the intent and the spirit of your comment. We probably could find a number of authors willing to… Read more »
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[…] the fine round of comments and discussion that followed our Extra Ether: Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Banning post —  special thanks to Laura Hazard Owen for getting us all thinking — Ethernauts […]

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[…] week’s brouhaha is over Tim Ferriss’ book, which Barnes & Noble (and many independent bookstores) refuse to carry because they have boycotted shelving any Amazon-published books. As a result, Ferriss is marketing […]

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[…] Click here to read the entire post. And Join us Thurs­days at JaneFriedman.com for Writ­ing on the Ether, and on Tues­days at PublishingPerspectives.com for Ether for Authors. About Porter Ander­sonPorter Ander­son, BA, MA, MFA, is a Fel­low with the National Crit­ics Insti­tute and has done spe­cial read­ings in the psy­chol­ogy of the arts at the Uni­ver­sity of Bath, UK. As a jour­nal­ist, he has worked with three net­works of CNN (CNN USA, CNN Inter­na­tional, CNN.com) and was on the lead devel­op­ment team for CNN.com Live. He also has worked on The Vil­lage Voice, Dal­las Times Her­ald, D Mag­a­zine, Sara­sota Herald-Tribune… Read more »
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Turndog Millionaire
3 years 8 months ago

Few can argue that Ferris is a savvy seller (I say seller rather than marketer), but this screams to be more old school than new, which in the long run could harm him.

His book isn’t banned, merely not being stocked due to political reasons between Amazon and B&N. It’s a strong word, banned, and on this instance he could regret using it. then again, maybe not, because I’m sure it’s lining his pockets as we speak ha.

You can’t beat a good old debate, can you? 🙂

Matthew (Turndog Millionaire)

Dustin
Dustin
3 years 8 months ago

Great arguments here, and the comments have been good, too. Winner: Ferriss.

I actually felt the same way as a lot of the haters, but that wit the author mentions has worked on me, and Tim has grown on me in general. Keep dogging him, question him, you’re doing exactly what he wants. Can any of this publicity actually be bad for him? Given his navigation of peoples’ critiques, I don’t think so.

Suzanna B. Stinnett
3 years 6 months ago
Ferriss has an unusual combination of decision-making genetics that drive him. He can zero in on a success model from a hundred miles away. However, his success is not everyone’s. Sometimes it is not anyone’s. Have you tried his formula for learning a foreign language? I guess it’s not fair to claim that he saw gold in the word “banned,” and is using it that disingenuously, but seeing how he approaches everything he does, it is very easy to believe. It’s likely he really does feel that his book is so important and his perspective so purely right, that if… Read more »
Bad business
Bad business
3 years 6 months ago

I haven’t shopped at barnes and noble since they convinced the public to fund their online presence, ran the stock into the ground and took it private.

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[…] announced January 2012, against Amazon Publishing books. So frustrated with the situation was Amazon author Tim Ferriss that he resorted to a special promotion with Bit Torrent to try to compensate for what he called B&N’s “retail […]

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