Discussion Post: Ebook Prices Vs. Paperback Prices.


Hi, everyone! Welcome back!


The other week, something interesting happened. You see, I fell in love with a new series, and I’m having the issue of my library not supplying very many ecopies of the books. So, I’m getting stuck on a bunch of holds lists. So, not being a person who avoids buying ebooks, I went on both B&N and Amazon Kindle to pay for the ecopy. No problem! I don’t mind borrowing some of the books from the library and having random books from the series on my Nook. They’re super rereadable, anyways!


So, I go on B&N and Amazon, and I noticed something a little bizarre. The ebook was the same price as the paperback. That was pretty much across the board for all of the books in the series. There were a few exceptions, but I think those were for the newer releases that probably came out in Hardback…I’m not that far in the series and there are like 20 books.


Again, I’m not a person who minds paying for an ebook. I paid like $12 for a new Harper debut this year, and I often buy ebooks that range from $1.99 to $7.99 Do I buy all of the books that I want? No. I receive a lot of books to read through NetGalley, Edelweiss, publishers, and my local library. I do like to support my favorite authors, though, by purchasing their books! I already know like 2 books that I’m going to purchase with my own money in January. This one rubbed me a little wrong, though….. Why should I have to pay the same price for an ebook as I would a paperback?


I took to Twitter with my comment, and I received several different responses. Some people (a large majority of them, actually) were on my side. Ebooks should be cheaper. I’m not going out and purchasing a physical copy from my bookstore. It’s not taking up any space in my house. It’s simple the electronic version of the book that will stay on my Nook. Do I think that the book should be worthless? NO! I should still have to pay for it. I just don’t see why they’re the same price.


I also received some negative responses to my tweet. And when I say negative, I mean that people were pissed. the. hell. off. This one person tried to tell me that producing a physical copy of the book really doesn’t cost any money at all and that there shouldn’t be a difference in price. UHM. Yes……it does cost more money to produce a physical copy. You know, since you’re actually using the paper, the ink, the binding, etc. It should cost a lot more. I did have an author come to my rescue on this one and side with me (the original person who got ticked off never responded to that!) Not a lot of people got mad……but I did receive some angry tweets that day!


So, I want to bring this to a discussion. Should ecopies be cheaper than physical copies? Is it really that far off to believe that I’m being ripped off by paying the same price for an ecopy that I would for a physical copy?


Remember: don’t fight in the comments if you have differing opinions. I’m completely open to all thoughts on the matter, and I respect everyone equally. I really just want to know. What are your thoughts on the matter?