Do you want every ebook in the world in Logos?

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Graham Criddle | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 4:06 AM

Bruce Dunning:
Is this a new development? I think we were under the impression that it was all or nothing. I think the responses in this thread would have been different if we knew this.

In Bob's post he does say this is new news:

"With that said... new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog. This would let us not offer the 10% least appropriate / most objectionable content. I'm hoping this will solve the problem."

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Bruce Dunning | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 4:47 AM

Graham Criddle:

Bruce Dunning:
Is this a new development? I think we were under the impression that it was all or nothing. I think the responses in this thread would have been different if we knew this.

In Bob's post he does say this is new news:

"With that said... new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog. This would let us not offer the 10% least appropriate / most objectionable content. I'm hoping this will solve the problem."

You are right. That is pretty clear. I think I was so focused on reading the 90% I just overlooked the obvious. Embarrassed

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David Taylor Jr | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 5:18 AM

For what it is worth, Vyrso books are only good if you are using them in a Logos Environment. Example, a book you would use for research. If I am buying a book for just reading, I don't buy it from Logos or Vyrso, why? Because even though I can send it to my Kindle the quality is not there. It can't even get the formatting for the table of contents right.

That being said, even with 90% of the catalog, that still means there is a chance of title that have no place being associated with a faith-based company making it into the store. I still say no.

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Mark | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 5:27 AM

I also am not convinced.  What are the summary arguments for wanting to have every book in the world in logos?

I like logos for the search engine.  Easy to study the Scriptures and search for topics etc.  For every book in the world I would not need that

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Kevin Maples | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 6:22 AM

Bob Pritchett:
With that said... new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog. This would let us not offer the 10% least appropriate / most objectionable content. I'm hoping this will solve the problem. 
I think that solves your problem. Go for it!

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EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 7:24 AM

Bob Pritchett:

With that said... new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog. This would let us not offer the 10% least appropriate / most objectionable content. I'm hoping this will solve the problem. 

Based on feedback here, I am leaning towards offering the broad library at a completely different storefront. We'd remove the most objectionable content (note: while we'd put in a category filter, if possible, we'd probably end up doing some of this the day after it automatically appeared in the feed) and design the store to showcase the most relevant material to our users. The primary goal, of course, wouldn't even be new customers (unlikely anyway -- Amazon is almost unassailable in the general market). The goal would be to have a pool of resources we could use to meet your needs and requests, and those of the Christian colleges and seminaries we're hoping to serve, ensuring every title a pastor or student could need was available in one platform.

That sounds like a very reasonable plan.

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Rick | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 7:29 AM

Bob Pritchett:
we have no intention of abandoning our focus on the church.

Bob Pritchett:
I think it's safe to say we're 'not becoming Harvard.' We're focused on serving the church.

Thank you. That is always a worry for me as you expand your company.

Bob Pritchett:
new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog.

That is indeed good news.

Bob Pritchett:
Based on feedback here, I am leaning towards offering the broad library at a completely different storefront.

Awesome. Thank you for listening to your customers. This was my main concern.

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Yasmin Stephen | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 7:32 AM

Bob Pritchett:

With that said... new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog. This would let us not offer the 10% least appropriate / most objectionable content. I'm hoping this will solve the problem. 

Two cents from me and my jerking knee: Taking on 90% instead of a full catalog will not make much of a difference in the amount of nasty junk you'll get.  There is a TON of filth in the Amazon ebook catalog and a lot of it lives between innocuous titles and tame book descriptions. And thinking that 'hiding' it away in a separate store (and with filters???) will take the problem away is just wrongheaded, IMO. People will visit this store, they will find objectionable/inappropriate books, they will buy objectionable/inappropriate books, and Faithlife will take the money from the sale of objectionable/inappropriate books.

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David Taylor Jr | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 7:43 AM

Yasmin Stephen:

Bob Pritchett:

With that said... new information: while every publisher has different rules, it looks like we may be able to get a contract if we agree to distribute just 90% of a publisher's catalog. This would let us not offer the 10% least appropriate / most objectionable content. I'm hoping this will solve the problem. 

Two cents from me and my jerking knee: Taking on 90% instead of a full catalog will not make much of a difference in the amount of nasty junk you'll get.  There is a TON of filth in the Amazon ebook catalog and a lot of it lives between innocuous titles and tame book descriptions. And thinking that 'hiding' it away in a separate store (and with filters???) will take the problem away is just wrongheaded, IMO. People will visit this store, they will find objectionable/inappropriate books, they will buy objectionable/inappropriate books, and Faithlife will take the money from the sale of objectionable/inappropriate books.

Exactly

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abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 7:44 AM

Mark:

I also am not convinced.  What are the summary arguments for wanting to have every book in the world in logos?

I like logos for the search engine.  Easy to study the Scriptures and search for topics etc.  For every book in the world I would not need that



This would make MANY if not ALL my textbooks available in some way for logos (be it vyrso, noet, or Logos proper).

in a given year at seminary I have 6-15 text books, and 2-3 of those are available in Logos. I spend ~600$ on text books each semester out of amazon because I can't get them in Logos.

Plus from your perspective they wouldn't ALL be in your library instantly, you'd still have to pick and choose what is useful to you. Only the things you license will end up in your library. Its like going from 10,000 titles in the logos store to a few million covering every rabbit trail and research opportunity you can think of. Primary religious texts and their commentaries would now be available. Cultural anthropology texts, linguistics material, stuff about ancient Israel from an Israelis perspective and on and on and on.

For those of you saying it would let "trash" filter into logos... Hate to break it to you but depending on your denominational bias there may well already be things you consider in that light.

For me, and my part, I will shop at Logos for the books I want like I would stop at a grocery store that sells booze & porn - or basically Barns and Noble.

Whether or not that conflicts with Bob & Faithlife's mission is not for us to decide or to be offended about. We project this ideal of ministry on FL, when in truth they are a business.

IF selling the whole (or 90%) of the catalog funds better bible software, then that serves the church. Then that is in a way fueling ministry by using the enemies funds...

There is a missions organization funded by the Guinness family fortunes :P

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Edwin Bowden | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:11 AM

Keith Larson:

Some thoughts:

It seems that there is a need for four book stores:

  1. Tagged Biblical Research Books = Logos
  2. Tagged Academic Research Books = Noet
  3. EPub Christian Books = Vyrso
  4. EPub General Books = “New Store”

This being the case there need to be a search option at each of the stores to show results from all for book stores. It is already a pain to have to search both Logos and Vyrso to see if I can purchase a Christian book I am interested in.

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Reuben Helmuth | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:18 AM

abondservant:
Primary religious texts and their commentaries would now be available. Cultural anthropology texts, linguistics material, stuff about ancient Israel from an Israelis perspective and on and on and on.

This is what is most appealing to me and I would LOVE to see that part. Don't get me wrong, I dare say I'm more conservative that 95+% of the Logos customer base Indifferent and would abhor to see Faithlife lose the Faith and eventually the life! Let's think seriously, however, and be careful that our rationale is rational...

Being given the 90% option is actually quite significant. Those of you who point to the amount of "junk" on Amazon aren't being logical. I know Bob did draw a parallel with Amazon, BUT, Amazon is NOT the publisher. Faithlife would not need to license the catalogues of all the same publishers as Amazon does! Given that Faithlife would be sticking with "reputable" publishers, surely it couldn't be that significantly greater than 10% of their material would be erotica or otherwise morally objectionable!

Again, I think it would be wrong IF christians would be caused to sin through what was offered available. On the other hand, I think that there is a very real possibility of making use of this opportunity in a way that's "wise as serpents AND harmless as doves"!

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Rayner | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:19 AM

Mark:
I also am not convinced.  What are the summary arguments for wanting to have every book in the world in logos?

From my point of view, it would provide a much more impressive and academic theological offering.  I'd not have slightest interest in purchasing maths or physics books, but I really would like access to more academic theology and biblical studies.  It would be fantastic to have it all tagged, but I'd rather have it available in Logos and untagged than only available on Amazon and unsearchable and extractable with difficulty.

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:22 AM

Mark:

I also am not convinced.  What are the summary arguments for wanting to have every book in the world in logos?

I like logos for the search engine.  Easy to study the Scriptures and search for topics etc.  For every book in the world I would not need that

I have posted a "yes" and then later, a "no" to Bob's question... but let me answer you directly:

I don't think anyone wants to have EVERY BOOK IN THE WORLD in logos... Rather, there are books which some users might want/need which aren't currently available. In my case, I have over 6,000 books in Logos and 1,000 on Kindle. Most of the kindle books I would not want in Logos, but there are some which I would. My rationale is that ANY book I might want to use in teaching or speaking, I would want in Logos. 

Two examples: To Kill A Mockingbird and Becoming Steve Jobs (I am currently reading the later). I could easily see using either for illustrations in both preaching and speaking (i.e. Toastmasters, Graduation Banquets, etc.). The number one benefit to me of the Logos system is the integrated search library. 

The whole EVERY BOOK IN THE WORLD thing came up because some publishers would require a reseller (i.e. Logos) to carry every title in their catalog to be a reseller of their works. This sort of thing is common in business... even cable TV! One of the reasons we can't have "ala cart" cable or satellite is because the mega companies won't allow it. If you want ESPN, you have to take twenty other channels as well.

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:26 AM

Rayner:
 I'd not have slightest interest in purchasing maths or physics books, but I really would like access to more academic theology and biblical studies.

I took an economics class last year, and having the econ book in Logos would have been a great help to me! I don't think a regular math book of problems would be too appealing for most people, but I could see some users benefiting from theoretical math / physics / astronomy, etc. 

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Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:28 AM

Perhaps I don't understand what Bob meant correctly, but it seems to me that if the deal is that publishers stream their entire catalog in EPUB format, even the more "Logos Bible Software" type of resources in that mass would be more like Vyrso books, that is, untagged.

If I understand this correctly then, would we want to have more books that are not tagged? Would this require a realistic readjustment of our expectations: this or that monograph from Brill is great but I won't be able to use Bible research specific tools on it, apart from what could be done with just a plain book (read, take notes, highlight, search). Example: if an original language word is mentioned, I imagine it would not link up to lexica. If a cross-reference to a primary source is provided, I imagine it would not be tagged as such, etc.

Again, I am not sure at all of this but wondering.

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Charlene | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:28 AM

Alain Maashe:

While I am not surprised by this development (planning wise at least) from a business perspective, the fact that Bob would even ask saddens me greatly.

Just image the possible legacy summarized by statements such as , "I became hooked on pornography and extramarital affairs after discovering this erotica series through Faithlife (or whatever store front)." What a testimony. and no, the excuse, I was just the electronic distributor will not do anymore that I was just the drug-dealer and it was not even my main business venture.

Because Faithlife (Logos) began with a mission to serve the Church, it is held to a different standard than the one applied to Amazon for example that has never pretended to be Christian. 1 Cor 5:9-13 would apply here.

Alain 

I agree.

Charlene

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Keith Larson | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:29 AM

Bob Pritchett:

The primary goal, of course, wouldn't even be new customers (unlikely anyway -- Amazon is almost unassailable in the general market). The goal would be to have a pool of resources we could use to meet your needs and requests, and those of the Christian colleges and seminaries we're hoping to serve, ensuring every title a pastor or student could need was available in one platform.

I think these two sentences are very important to remember in this discussion. The amount of books sold from this potential book store will be very small, its primary purpose will be for Faithlife to cherry pick the good stuff out of it and place those books in their Logos, Noet and Vyrso bookstores. The people who are inclined to purchase profane materials will be going elsewhere. This will be even more likely if the publishers give Faithlife the ability to remove the most objectionable books. Moreover, I would hope that Faithlife would only sell books they have reviewed at a discount and everything else at FULL retail price. This alone would herd most people who purchase smut towards Amazon.

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Charlene | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:34 AM

Dan Francis:

First and foremost Faithlife is a business. If it were a "Mission to serve the Church" we would have much cheaper products and in general things would be added as needed and not in a pre-pub system.

Then change the statement contained in "About us" at the Logos home page.

Charlene

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Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 20 2015 8:39 AM

Charlene:
I agree.

... yes, but I think that it is time to concede that things are not what we thought they were or are pretended to be. The real point of the thread is to announce that FL has chosen to become like Amazon, and to a lesser extent, to find a way to bring it to pass that takes into consideration the sensibilities of the majority of the customer base. I share in the grief and hope that my brothers and sisters will not be excessively discouraged by this, but keep their eyes and hearts in the right place.

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