Does Crossway pay Logos / Morris Proctor for promoting the ESV?

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Bruce Fraser | Forum Activity | Posted: Mon, Jul 23 2012 10:02 AM

Just curious...

Every training video about Logos shows the ESV as the preferred Bible. Therefore it comes up first in all searches, references, etc. It is ALWAYS there; NEVER any other version.

This gives a huge boost towards creating ESV's image as the leading Bible in the English speaking world. So it got me wondering... whether Crossway (the ESV publisher) pays Logos and/or Morris for promoting their product. Anyone know anything about this, beyond my mere speculation?

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David Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 10:11 AM

Bruce Fraser:
Anyone know anything about this, beyond my mere speculation?

My speculation is not that Crossway is paying Logos, but that Crossway is making their product available without charging as much of a royalty as other publishers may be charging.

You and I are permitted to quote short portions of many translations, but Logos and MP Seminars uses the products to generate income which means they must pay royalties for copyrighted materials.

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 10:12 AM

Bruce Fraser:
So it got me wondering... whether Crossway (the ESV publisher) pays Logos and/or Morris for promoting their product. Anyone know anything about this, beyond my mere speculation?

I think you are reading too much into it. Outside of "Logos," the ESV seems to have better licensing agreements (they make their translation available more easily than, say Zondervan/NIV). Furthermore, many of the young "hipster" preachers, who would be inclined to use a product like Logos, are using it (i.e. Driscoll). If you eliminate the NIV, which translation would fit the target demographic best? 

FWIW - I worked for two years in a major university bookstore. The most popular translation was the ESV, despite not being the translation chosen by the majority of the faculty.

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LaRosa Johnson | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 10:26 AM

Also, for what it's worth, Logos played a part in developing the Reverse Interlinear data for the ESV, aligning it to the NA27 text. So that may be part of the reason.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 1:38 PM

Bruce Fraser:
Every training video about Logos shows the ESV as the preferred Bible. Therefore it comes up first in all searches, references, etc. It is ALWAYS there; NEVER any other version.

I would not assume that Logos works like movies in this case i.e. that they are paid to show ESV. Rather, I would assume one (or more) of the following:

  • that the people doing the videos consider it important to use a consistent set-up so that viewers don't get confused by inconsistencies
  • that the ESV happens to be the preferred Bible of someone in the video development team
  • that the ESV is statistically the most used default Bible in Logos' users set-ups

Naturally I prefer my speculation to your speculation because of the multiple possibilities - but mine like yours is still mere speculation.Smile

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Posts 594
Ted Weis | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 3:09 PM

The ESV is a more literal translation and for that reason is useful for Bible study

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Robert M. Warren | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 4:02 PM

I echo what 'Bama said and will add that since it was first published, Good News/Crossway has shown themselves to bend over backwards to allow the widest distribution of the ESV, unlike another bible society/publisher, who for many years acted as if their translation was the Coca-Cola formula.

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Posts 99
Bruce Fraser | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Jul 23 2012 7:20 PM

Robert and Alabama mention the ESV's generous licensing policy. I have noted this with several of the free Bible software programs, which are able to include the ESV for free. Very good of them.

At the same time, I fully understand charging Logos users for downloading the ESV; after all, if someone has hundreds of dollars to plunk down for software, they can well afford to pay for the translation.

Posts 10178
Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 5:57 AM

Huh?   'If they can afford the game tickets, then they should be able to pay through the nose on the sodas.'  (Little league game of course.)

Whenever I see people charging for religious text and royalties on intented praise text  ('Oh, it's a businesss!!'), I just read Didache one more time.  (I'm not talking about re-couping costs.)

Whoever wrote Didache knew Christianity.

 


Posts 570
Rev Chris | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 6:28 AM

DMB:

Whoever wrote Didache knew Christianity.

You must read it different than I do.  Here's what I get out of the Didache:

13 Every Genuine prophet

13:1 Every genuine prophet who wants to live among you is worthy of support.

13:2 So also, every true teacher is, like a workman, entitled to his support.

If a prophet is one that brings the Word of God to the people, and a teacher is one that helps people understand the Word, I see no reason why Logos is not entitled to support.

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Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 6:46 AM

Oh, I've no complaint with the Logos with both its free volumes and  $10 volumes. I think that decision a while back was very good. And I've ESPECIALLY got no complaint on the LEB or the Logos greek interlinears. Both are very professional, free, and quite a bit of cost went into them. In theory, in between the free volumes on Biblia or the L4 engine plus free volumes, you can do pretty interesting work. Again no complaints there.

I'm referring to the publishing industry (or as one periodically reads 'the Bible industry').

And regardiing Didache, keep reading (who is genuine?).


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Kevin Becker | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 7:15 AM

Bob Pritchett sad back in 2009 that the ESV work tends to happen first because it is reasonably literal and generously licensed.

http://community.logos.com/forums/p/7056/55941.aspx#55941

So, if the ESV is the one to get first love for new features that means that the staff would naturally learn new stuff on the ESV. It's easy to see why the ESV would become the go-to translation, especially since in cases like the High Definition New Testament, the ESV is the only English version available. Sticking with the ESV keeps you from having to jump from version to version as you move through the program.

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Kevin Becker | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 7:19 AM

DMB:
And I've ESPECIALLY got no complaint on the LEB or the Logos greek interlinears. Both are very professional, free, and quite a bit of cost went into them.

It will be interesting to see what happens now that Logos has a version it produced and costs it nothing to use if new features will be Lexham first, ESV and others later or if Logos will continue to develop ESV features first like it has in the past.I suspect things won't change because Lexham is billed more as a supplemental Bible and not a primary Bible.

Posts 570
Rev Chris | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 7:32 AM

DMB:

Oh, I've no complaint with the Logos with both its free volumes and  $10 volumes. I think that decision a while back was very good. And I've ESPECIALLY got no complaint on the LEB or the Logos greek interlinears. Both are very professional, free, and quite a bit of cost went into them. In theory, in between the free volumes on Biblia or the L4 engine plus free volumes, you can do pretty interesting work. Again no complaints there.

I'm referring to the publishing industry (or as one periodically reads 'the Bible industry').

And regardiing Didache, keep reading (who is genuine?).

I'm still not sure I follow.  You don't like that some volumes cost money but others you are fine with?  Or is it a matter of cost? (anything over $10 is somehow not Christian?)  Even the publishing industry needs compensation - if not, all the people in that industry would leave the industry to find jobs that allowed them to feed their families.  In which case, we wouldn't have the books.

As for the Didache - you'll have to be more specific.  I still don't know what part you're referring to.  Is it:

13:7 If you acquire money or cloth or any other possession, set aside a portion first, as it may seem good to you, and give according to the commandment.

??  If so, each employee at Logos has to make the decision to tithe for themselves.  If there's another section of the Didache you're referring to, please share.

At the end of the day, books are worth what we will pay for them.  If a particular resource is too expensive in your eyes, simply do not purchase it.  Then Logos and the publisher and the authors/editors won't be paid.

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Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 9:25 AM

Now, Rev Chris, I know you're a good guy. But let's not go off the deep end here. First, let's recognize the scriptures are from God. We probably both agree. Now let's SELL God's scriptures.

Maybe pay for the paper? Certainly all the work that went into copying it and distributing it. So far so good. No disagreement.

But of course we DO have to make a profit off of God's scriptures, don't we? Of course we do. Plus profits off of praise we wrote for the believers to sing to God. Well, of course we do.

So I suppose we're in agreement here.

Regarding Didache, F.I.Andersen (of our beloved Andersen Forbes fame) wrote a good discussion in 1995 on how early jews and then Christians were instructed to detect the prophets whose hearts were not in the right place. Interestingly, most often 'the message' was not the tip-off. And sure enough, he brought up Didache. In simpler terms 'Three days tops mooching of the brothers and you're out of here.'


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Rev Chris | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 10:28 AM

DMB:

Now, Rev Chris, I know you're a good guy.

 

Thank you - likewise

DMB:

But let's not go off the deep end here. First, let's recognize the scriptures are from God. We probably both agree.

Agreed - although I"m not sure where the deep end came in

DMB:

Now let's SELL God's scriptures.

Maybe pay for the paper? Certainly all the work that went into copying it and distributing it. So far so good. No disagreement.

But of course we DO have to make a profit off of God's scriptures, don't we? Of course we do. Plus profits off of praise we wrote for the believers to sing to God. Well, of course we do.

So I suppose we're in agreement here.

Hmm - I'm not sure we are in agreement.  Perhaps this is where the "deep end" is at?  Based on what you say right here, yes I suppose we are in agreement.  But I detect a bit of sarcasm.

Your issue seems to be with the idea of "profit", yes?  Maybe also with the idea of "prophet", but let's stick with the former for now! Smile

I want to make sure I understand your argument, so let me say what I think you mean:

It's okay to charge for:

1) materials used to reproduce Scripture (e.g., papyrus, paper, ink, etc)

2) compensation for time spent (re)producing the work

3) cost of distributing the work (e.g., travel/lodging fees of scribes, etc)

It's not okay to charge for:

4) anything else (i.e., profit)

My question is, how do you determine what #1, #2, and #3 should be?  I suppose the cost of paper and ink is pretty easy to figure out.  Although then again, do the companies producing the paper and ink get to charge profit?  But what about electronic resources like Logos?  I assume the cost of computer hardware and software at Logos headquarters gets to be reimbursed.  And we have to add in the cost of building facilities - have to keep those computer servers nice and cool.  And of course we have the cost of technology for the publishers and the authors/editors.

And when it comes to the cost of distributing the works, well I suppose that is fairly easy to determine as well, right?  If it's an ancient scribe going from one town to the next, he or she could just get a receipt for their expenses.  But today things are bit more complicated.  Distribution happens on a much wider scale, and many people are involved.  Still, having well-trained accountants should be able to provide a good estimate of the cost of distribution - again for Logos, the publishers, and the authors/editors.  Of course, you better pay the accountants for their work.  Which brings us to #2:

How do you determine the amount of compensation employees should receive for their work?  I suppose some Logos employees would say that they see working there as living out their call from God and would be willing to take a vow of poverty if that's what it took to continue working at Logos.  But my guess is that most do not.  Not to mention that the IRS doesn't recognize the vow of poverty clause for employees at a computer software company.  So, we better pay them a fair wage.  But who gets to determine that?  Is minimum wage - something arbitrarily set by the government - a good measure?  Or should we go with a "living wage", however that might be determined?  Or, should we set it at a competitive rate to make sure Logos retains highly-qualified employees?  My guess is we want Logos to stay in business and continue producing high-quality work, so we better go with the competitive rate.

But, where does the line between that end and profit begin?  That brings us to #4 - everything else (aka, profit).  What is "profit"?  Is it not simply compensation for those invested in a company, determined not by a set salary but by the risk of whatever is left over?  I suppose we could tell Bob, "we want you to take a set salary for now on, at our choosing, and then give the rest of the money to XYZ."  Of course, we'd have to take some kind of poll to determine Bob's salary - and to determine where the extra "profits" should go to.  But then again, why are we the ones to determine that?  Shouldn't Bob get to determine where the money that comes across his desk goes to?  After all, he is the one accountable to God for the resources he's entrusted with.

Boy - this is getting way too complicated!  Let's go back to a simpler model - we'll just charge $0-10 for every resource Logos distributes - and hope for the best.  There's no need to bother with keeping a company afloat, or making sure all the employees are treated fairly and equitably.

DMB:

Regarding Didache, F.I.Andersen (of our beloved Andersen Forbes fame) wrote a good discussion in 1995 on how early jews and then Christians were instructed to detect the prophets whose hearts were not in the right place. Interestingly, most often 'the message' was not the tip-off. And sure enough, he brought up Didache. In simpler terms 'Three days tops mooching of the brothers and you're out of here.'

I'm still not sure what you're going after here with this.  We're back to the difference between "profit" and "prophet" I see.  But beyond that I'm confused.  Are you suggesting Logos should close up shop after being in business 3 days?  I'm glad they didn't - I would have missed out on a great software program!

 

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Denise | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 11:32 AM

Well, actually, Rev Chris, if you read my answer above, I wasn't pointing the  finger at Logos, instead complimenting them for either free or 'at cost' Bibles (LEB and SBL-greek being actually well below cost == free).

But yes, I was being a bit sarcastic; I've never been able to reconcile charging beyond cost, either on what purports to be divine communications  (the 'purporting' as per the businesses, not me) or even worse, charging for words of praise.

At church when they flash the little pay-number on the screen during worship (we paid! we paid!), I think 'gee, got that check-off nailed. Now for the other one.


Posts 570
Rev Chris | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 11:54 AM

DMB:

Well, actually, Rev Chris, if you read my answer above, I wasn't pointing the  finger at Logos, instead complimenting them for either free or 'at cost' Bibles (LEB and SBL-greek being actually well below cost == free).

Sorry if I misunderstood.  I guess the issue is with the publisher of ESV?

DMB:

But yes, I was being a bit sarcastic; I've never been able to reconcile charging beyond cost, either on what purports to be divine communications  (the 'purporting' as per the businesses, not me) or even worse, charging for words of praise.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'words of praise', so I have a hard time commenting on that.  As for the Bible, remember that ESV is a translation, and a lot of work still had to go into it, which should be compensated.  I think my point about "cost" vs "profit" still holds true here though - its just backed up a level in the supply chain.  Now, admittedly, some publishers (e.g., Abingdon and their retail unit Cokesbury) subsidize the cost of their Bible translations with the profits of other books.  They do so as a form of mission to get the Bible in as many hands as possible.  But they still charge a nominal fee for their Bibles - and they generally subsidize certain print copies, not every form available.  I suppose there's a difference between making God's work publicly available and providing it in such a way as to be useful for serious study.  It's not hard to find an English Bible for a couple of bucks - even free online.  But having the translation you want in the format you'd like - well, I guess I'm not surprised we're expected to pay.  The only question is how much.  $10 seems like a fair price to me, which happens to be what Logos charges for the ESV.  I think I paid a similar price for the Common English Bible.

DMB:

At church when they flash the little pay-number on the screen during worship (we paid! we paid!), I think 'gee, got that check-off nailed. Now for the other one.

I have to admit - that's not something I've seen in church before.  Does it show the amount collected that Sunday, or the amount given to missions during the week, or what?  I'm guessing you don't find it sincere or helpful?

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 12:07 PM

Rev Chris:
Sorry if I misunderstood.  I guess the issue is with the publisher of ESV?

I don't think DMB's problem is with Crossway (ESV), whom we have already mentioned as being generous, but rather companies like Zondervan.

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Rev Chris | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Jul 24 2012 12:27 PM

alabama24:

Rev Chris:
Sorry if I misunderstood.  I guess the issue is with the publisher of ESV?

I don't think DMB's problem is with Crossway (ESV), whom we have already mentioned as being generous, but rather companies like Zondervan.

Oh - well I guess I misunderstood quite a bit in this thread!

Well, I've never cared much for Zondervan - but for other reasons... Stick out tongue

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