Kindle and Facebook

1. I submitted the blog to Amazon for publication on the Kindle. Their form says they have a backlog, so we’ll see if it ever happens. If you have any pull at Amazon, put in a word for us.

2. We now have a Facebook page called The Baseline Scenario. If that link doesn’t work for you you should be able to search for it and then become a fan. The page imports the RSS feed from the blog, so you can read the blog without leaving Facebook, if that’s your cup of tea. There is also a Wall that you can post things to as usual. In the future, we may figure out more things to do on Facebook, but that’s it for now.*

We do these things (Twitter, too) because we want to make things easier for our readers. It’s a generally correct rule in business that it is a good thing to make life easier for your customers. I believe that if you want people to read your stuff, you have to go where they are – and if that’s Twitter, or Facebook, or Kindle, then that’s where you should be.

* Incidentally, I don’t understand the Facebook model. They seem to be trying to get people to use and enjoy the Internet within the tight confines of Facebook. This reminds me of the old days of CompuServe and AOL. Ordinarily when I work I have about 10-12 tabs open on my browser, and at most one of them is Facebook. There is so much stuff on the Internet, why would you limit yourself to the stuff your friends posted? Besides, I find their user interface non-intuitive, and with each iteration they make it less powerful – and I used to work at a software company.

16 thoughts on “Kindle and Facebook

  1. I identify with your Facebook comment; seems to be easier and more enjoyable using Twitter to follow folks’ updates.

    Again, thanks for all the new ways to access your site; I think I’m going overkill and using ALL of them!

  2. Totally agree on Facebook. Definitely the AOL of the 21st century. Glad for Twitter and RSS.

  3. Come on AA! A little commerce and all of us bloggers can have a tiny slice of immortality. Thank you James! How fun!

  4. Be careful of your intellectual property on Facebook–some of their terms and conditions are confiscatory. Read that contract.


  5. Yes, Facebook is strangely AOL-like, but I think of it as a sandbox in which I can comfortably play with my friends and family.

  6. The business model of Facebook is classic 2000s Internet boom-bust model:

    1. Keep on adding eyeballs
    2. Add new time-wasters to draw in eye-balls
    3. Use time wasters to pull all personal data from the owners of eyeballs (aka people)
    4. Aggregate, filter and sell the private information of people
    5. Create a platform for companies to do 2-4.
    6. Generate small profit streams from companies
    7. IF limit of eye balls > BIG, go to sell mode
    8. Repeat from 1.
    9. Sell to the highest bidder, resign for operations, say that the company is in good hands for the next growth spurt
    10. Watch the thing crash and burn

    People should understand that Facebook is a closed and proprietary privacy-raping system, meant to suck people dry. It’s evil.

    There are much better and less evil alternatives available.

  7. James,

    Based on the quality of the Finance & Investing blogs listed for Kindle, it doesn’t look like there’s any content screening process going on — Realtime Economics listed next to “Seth’s Blog”. In other words, the backlog may be massive… I’ll check back periodically to see if this blog is listed.

    In the meantime, I can pull up via Kindle 2’s text-based web browser. The formatting is funky, naturally, but it works.

  8. Hi James,

    re: facebook model.

    I use it as a good way to keep contact with all of my friends from university and elsewhere. Basically, it’s email with pictures. I’m a great fan, but I don’t really use it for much more than that. I think that’s what most people in my age group (20’s) are using it for.

    I agree that the interface is worse.

  9. This should explain a lot about Facebook…

    “updated 5:15 p.m. PT, Wed., Oct. 24, 2007
    SAN FRANCISCO – Rapidly rising Internet star Facebook Inc. has sold a 1.6 percent stake to Microsoft Corp. for $240 million, spurning a competing offer from online search leader Google Inc.”


    Microsoft = loser of a company (okay they have money, but lack innovation and execution)

    Google = winner of a company (their focus is user experience)

  10. The emerging FB model is ubiquity. Google search on every site, Amazon and affiliates on everysite, FB on every site. FB as the dominant social media app. Everywhere you visit you bring your FB friends with you.

  11. I have read all the “this is what facebook is about” stuff above. I agree with the original post. It seems silly. I did get to see a pic of an old friend, which was nice. I guess it’s easier to share pic’s than, say, filckr, and other terminally strange photo sites. So as one person said, it’s pics and email. Weird

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