Michael W. Perry’s political rant about the cause and ramifications of the DoJ price-fixing case definitely touched a nerve this week with a good number of readers. Some of you found Perry’s thought-process and logic to be a bit twisted, while others didn’t think the essay had any place being published on TeleRead at all, given its rather over-the-top political overtone.

Perry has since responded with a 2,200-word comment, and it’s nothing if not a doozy. Click here to give it a read.


  1. Dan, I think you misunderstood your readership by publishing Mr. Perry’s essay unedited.

    As I implied in my comment in the original post, I come here for “news and views on ebooks, libraries, publishing and related topics.” When I want political commentary I know where to find it … and TeleRead ain’t it.

  2. Rob,

    The problem I have is that the original post was not unedited. There is the line there for ” (for the very same alleged crime! —Ed.)” which shows that Dan Eldridge did read the entire post, liked it, added to it and posted it.

    Then there is this second posting about it.

    So we now know that TeleRead will be providing political commentary and additional opinion pieces that the editor agrees with.

    I used to use TeleRead in my Internet Skills classes for the public at our local library as an example of a targeted news aggregator. Not anymore. I took them off of my Facebook and Twitter feeds so that none of my friends will have the wrong idea that I endorse the site anymore.

    I will likely stop by here once in a while to see if things change back again but not sure just how often that would be. Not the daily feed I was used to seeing.

  3. Nobody wants to censor this guy. G*d love him, let him publish to his heart’s content, sell his books, spew hatred to his heart’s content.

    But Teleread doesn’t have infinite room for every writer and topic in the world. Why give this guy the real estate others are denied? TWICE?

  4. Mr Eldridge, the image you have used to decorate this post is shameful. (I assume TeleRead commissioned or purchased it, because there is no picture credit.)

    You published Mr Perry’s “rant”, as you now call it, and, as BOB says above, evidently “did read the entire post, liked it, added to it”.

    I know little about American politics, and have a low opinion of politicians of whatever stripe, but Perry’s central idea — that the DoJ judgment is likely to be politicized — is at least worthy of debate. The language he used clearly upset your readers; he took the time to respond, and now you call his response a “doozy”.

    If he is a foam-flecked lunatic, why did you publish his original post? If he is not, why are you now adopting this craven, run-with-the-herd attitude? An editor should have more loyalty than this to his contributors, or he will quickly find that he has no contributors at all.

  5. Speaking as a former editor, this may have been featured prominently not because the editor likes and agrees with it, but because he feels the content may be thought-provoking and merit discussion…a true editor tries to represent all sides of an argument and let people make up their own minds.

    I don’t object to opinion pieces. The industry is in such a state of flux, I think discussion of a variety of subjects is worthwhile…otherwise there would be no discussion of DRM, vendor lock-in, the merits of different distribution channels and formats, etc. Very, very few issues in ebook publishing are cut and dried fact; most are steeped in opinion.

    While Mr. Perry’s article is a bit of a ramble, bounding from subject to subject with chaotic, disorganized youthful glee, I think, at least on one subject, he makes a valid point about the dangers of regulating publishing through campaign/election law and the potential dangers of the Federal gov’t interfering.

    And I’m pretty sure I’m on the far opposite of his political affiliation.

  6. I’m rather amused by the whole thing. Back when I was writing for TeleRead, it was often hard to get any comments at all. I don’t think I ever tried expressing controversial political opinions. Maybe I should have. Live and learn.

    I don’t agree with either Mr. Perry’s original article or the response, but I don’t see anything wrong with TeleRead carrying such, as long as they don’t make up the bulk of the traffic. People need to be exposed to other opinions from time to time, even ones they don’t agree with, just so that they can be reminded why they don’t agree with them. Voltaire never actually said that famous line about defending to the death one’s right to say something, but he should have.

  7. I don’t have a problem with expressing opinions on whether the government shouldn’t have a role in combatting monopolies. I don’t see why TeleRead has to give screen time to anti-Muslim bigotry. I assume that somebody expressing hatred of African Americans or Jews wouldn’t be acceptable, or is that coming up this week?

  8. My problem with Mr. Perry’s post and his reply (besides his politics) is that they are both based on a view of the DOJ settlement which is not true. He appears to believe that the DOJ is attempting to abolish agency pricing agreements, which is not true, and also that the DOJ selected these publishers and Apple because they are somehow enemies of the Obama administration which is not substantiated, followed by more unrelated and unsubstantiated claims of Obama administration targeting companies because they contributed to Republicans. And then he goes on to claim that the Obama administration will somehow dictate prices Mr. Perry can charge, even though the DOJ settlement with the publishers doesn’t set any prices It only requires the publishers to switch back to contracts with wholesale pricing for two years. The DOJ lawsuit only targeted the 5 companies which all switched from wholesale pricing with distributors to agency pricing on the same day, along with the company whose CEO told his biographer that he met with them and told them that if they went with his plan to switch to agency pricing it would raise prices.

  9. “[The post] may have been featured prominently not because the editor likes and agrees with it, but because he feels the content may be thought-provoking and merit discussion…”

    The troll that provokes only flames in response is not the true troll.

The TeleRead community values your civil and thoughtful comments. We use a cache, so expect a delay. Problems? E-mail newteleread@gmail.com.