Like any self-respecting blogger, every day I look at the analytics of my page to see how many people read what I have to say. There aren't many of you, and my relative anonymity lets me be pretty free with my words.
However, lately, or more precisely, since Christmas day(December 25, 2007), the change in these analytics has been astounding. Prior to Christmas, there was a pretty even distribution of people coming to this blog either directly, or they clicked through from another blog, or they found it through a search engine. Today, that distribution is completely skewed. Since Christmas, the vast majority of readers have come via a search engine with the key phrase, 'how many kindles sold'. What they are finding is a previous post of mine with that same title. (Joe Wikert recently reported this in Kindleville). The numbers reading this post outstrip any other posts by a factor of 4 - 1. Pretty impressive considering about 3 people read it when I first posted it.
I can only surmise, that these people are (like me) waiting for the Kindle that someone gave them as a Holiday gift. And, Amazon is completely mum on when these are going to be shipped. As Joe would say, very 'Un-Amazon-ish'.
It's got me thinking, is this whole Kindle thing a hoax? Is there a great guffaw echoing from the top of the Veterans Hospital in Seattle? Is this the great practical joke of 2007? Obviously, they don't have them, or they would have been shipped already. What gives? Maybe they just wanted to give all of us, 'pundits', something to distract us while they moved in another direction.
Or, alternatively, did Amazon bet the farm on the assumption that the Kindle would fall flat on it's face? Was Kindle only introduced as a mechanism to shake up the book publishing industry and show them all how foolish they have been to eschew digital distribution?
Well, in any case, my initial excitement about getting a Kindle is turning to anger. And, as anyone who knows me will tell you, I'm a pretty patient guy. I imagine that there are many angry people out there, which is another reason in the 'massive' uptick in finding my old blog post. People have plunked down money and there are no goods coming. It's as simple as that.
And, unfortunately, it is very 'Amazon-ish' to not have any 'person' to go to. It doesn't seem that there there is a real responsibility taker anywhere in the entire operation. It's all computer systems. And when the systems don't work correctly, no one has to take personal responsibility.
It would be ironic if this 'Kindle debacle' single-handedly destroyed Amazon's (well earned) reputation for under-promising and over-delivering. Maybe then, a 'person' might have to eat some humble pie, and someone might (God forbid) have to take some responsibility and lose a job.