"Just checked: we are not getting ALL of Smashwords free titles. After they run the list of the top 10,000 downloaded titles, they are giving us the top 1,000 free titles. We're still waiting on the list of final titles, so I can't check to see if you're on it. But it shouldn't be more than a couple of weeks till we have them all in our catalog."
If you've been following this post and its comments, you know that Jamie has been the greatest at explaining Douglas County Libraries' relationship with Smashwords and Bilbary. Jamie patiently replied to my endless questions – probes regarding sort and selection criteria for acquiring titles from Smashwords.
Well, it seems that Smashwords' first round of titles does not contain ALL of the free titles within Smashwords. Unless I'm wrong, I didn't get the impression from Jamie that DCL has a concern with receiving ALL the free titles. So, what's the snag? Who, then, made the decision to cut off delivering all free Smashwords titles to DCL? … and why?
The subset of only the 1,000 top-selling free titles is being delivered to DCL. This fact leaves the rest of probably 40,000 Smashwords authors wondering what the heck the purpose is of Smashwords' new toys, "Library Direct" and "Pricing Manager."
I am comfortable with my belief that Smashwords authors whose free titles didn't make the "top 1,000 cut" must be very frustrated; Smashwords provides the highly-touted "Pricing Manager" option, allowing differing retail and library pricing, but then our free titles are ignored in subsequent library purchases/acquisitions.
When I approached Smashwords' founder, Mark Coker, with a series of closely-related questions, I did not get answers.
The discoveries shared within this ongoing post (and comments), then, represent a lapse in good judgment by Smashwords' leadership. They should be forthcoming regarding setting realistic expectations for authors and publishers free titles in the library models.
As such, I request that Smashwords management makes it a protocol to deliver ALL free titles (those approved by their authors) to library customers and aggregators.
Your thoughts on this subject?