Daily Archives: October 6, 2004

The Long Tail

In this post, Should Government Subsidize Mortgages, Tyler Cowen recommends this book for data on credit rationing. So, I hop over to Amazon to evaluate and what do I find: the price is $115 for a 384 page book with an Amazon sales rank of 1,755,070.
In his next post, Making Money From Niche Demand, he recommends, as do I, this article:

on how falling fixed costs (my terminology) will revolutionize the world of culture.
The long tail is the bottom end of the sales power curve which, according to the article, is where outfits like Amazon, Netflix, Rhapsody and iTunes are getting most of their revenue. For Amazon this is books with sales rank of under 130,000.
I might have considered purchasing Tyler’s book if he had been following some of the pricing suggestions in the article, for instance: Cut the Price in half. Now lower it. Sure, they are talking specifically about downloadable content but if you are ranked 1,755,070 following that suggestion just might move you up the rankings a bit and might make you a bit more money.
Update (10/7): Joi Ito has more on this. Also read the comments to his post for why $.99 might be too low, at least for some types of material.

Parents Wrong, School Administrator Wrong

Regular readers will know that Modulator probably wouldn’t be putting a photo montage of US presidents on the wall of a classroom. However, lots of teachers do this.
Even in an election year, there is no justification for including a challenger in or removing an incumbent from this type of montage.
Via Ravenwood.
Update 10/6: Commenter Lis Riba notes that the school district presents this much differently then the above linked article.
Apparently it was not a montage of all the presidents just w. But there is much more. Read the disctrict press release (linked above) and this extensive analysis of the incident.
Update 2 (10/6): Tom has a must read clarified version of the district press release.