November 2, 2013
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No, this isn’t about Obamacare and the national health exchange, although I’m going to refer to it. There’s this belief out there that governments are incapable of large information technology projects. They all have massive cost over-runs and are delayed and, frequently, utterly fail. Unfortunately, all of these horrible things frequently happen with government-run IT projects. So, the misfires with the Obamacare system isn’t unusual.
Here’s the thing. I was talking with an IT consultant a year or so ago and he let me in on the dirty little secret — corporations and businesses have just as many problems with implementing IT projects. You just don’t hear about them because the media doesn’t care. Which leads me to this.
On a much smaller scale than Obamacare, Amazon is demonstrating this. The last time I did a free promotion, it was in the midst of Amazon’s losing the ability to rank many books in their genres. So, while I was giving my book away, it wasn’t showing up in the genre rankings — which is pretty much the only reason you give your book away for free — to draw attention to it.
Now, Amazon has introduced a new promotion. Kindle Countdown Deals. Drop the price of your e-book at least 50% (or more), sign up for the promotion and they’ll, among other things, include your book on the special Kindle Countdown page on Amazon. Sounds great. I signed up. Dropping Weed Therapy from 4.99 to 1.99 for two days, starting today. Then to 2.99 for two days. 3.99 for two days. Then back to 4.99.
The details show up on my Amazon page for the book. The reduced price. The countdown details. The only problem is the book doesn’t show up on the page dedicated to Countdown Deals. WHICH IS THE ENTIRE REASON I DID THE PROMOTION!!!! Here’s the fascinating thing about this. The number of books on that dedicated page has remained stuck at 79 for the last two or three days. Which tells me something, because I’m smarticle like that — Amazon is having technical problems with its roll out of this promotion. And they aint a government. Seriously, if Amazon with all of its technological experience and prowess can’t even get right the linking of books to the dedicated page, how could the government possibly have got the Obamacare website operating smoothly right out of the gate.