LibraryThing Offers Free Accounts through this Sunday, March 31

In reaction to the recent purchase of Goodreads by Amazon.com, LibraryThing announced the following:

In the wake of Amazon’s acquisition of Goodreads, we’ve had some blow-back on the fact that LibraryThing charges for a membership to add more than 200 books. In fact, when you go to pay, it’s pay-what-you-want. The money helps pay for the site, and keeps us advertisement-free for members. Also, we believe customers should be customers, with the loyalty and rights of customers, not the thing we sell to our real customers.

However, some people don’t like it. And we want everyone. So, as a test and a welcome, we’re giving out free year’s accounts to everyone who signs up through the end of Sunday. We’ve also upgraded everyone who signed up since 4pm yesterday.

More on their site.

They neglected to mention however that they too are part-owned by Amazon.com (40% due to previous small business purchases by Amazon). This was referenced in the NYTimes article about Amazon's purchase of Goodreads.

"The deal is made more significant because Amazon already owned part or all of Goodreads’ competitors, Shelfari and LibraryThing. It bought Shelfari in 2008. It also owns a portion of LibraryThing as a result of buying companies that already owned a stake in the site. Both are much smaller and have grown much more slowly than Goodreads."

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40% ?

Where did the 40% number come from? People keep saying Amazon owns 40% of LibraryThing, but nobody seems to actually cite their source for it. It's not in the NYT article you link to...

Library Thing

Abebooks bought 40% of Library Thing. Amazon then bought 100% of Abebooks.
Ergo -- Amazon owns 40% of Library Thing

Article: Amazon To Acquire AbeBooks, And With It A Stake In LibraryThing
http://techcrunch.com/2008/08/01/amazon-to-acquire-abebooks/

No wonder

Ever wonder why Amazon owns so much? So people are whining at Library Thing because they charge a fee. If all the sites you use are free they are going to fold when they get big because Amazon will buy them. If you actually PAID for the service you used and a service like Goodreads made money they might consider not selling to Amazon. But everybody wants everything for free and they want to complain when Amazon makes a purchase.

Comment

Someone posted this comment and it was deleted:

I agree with the last comment (No wonder...). I pay for my Librarything account, as I do for a flickr account, and don't mind doing so. They don't charge or ask for much, and I think it is a small sum to pay for something I get so much benefit from. Free is great and wonderful, but it isn't a right. Silicon Valley pioneer Jaron Lanier is of the view that information should not be free but should be affordable, read at [REDACTED]

I assume it was deleted because it was thought that the bit.ly link was spam. The link does go to an article about Lanier. I would argue not spam.

Bit.ly link goes here ---
http://www.irishtimes.com/culture/the-online-guru-who-says-the-internet-is-out-to-steal-your...

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