One of the greatest digital publishing coups happened earlier this year when J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, displayed some of the boldest initiative yet by retaining the digital rights to her works, separating from her agency, and making her ebooks available exclusively through her own website, forgoing the percentage that would have gone to the major ebook distribution retailers. Unfortunately, the fall release of those ebooks was delayed as Pottermore focused its efforts on making the interactive reader website as top-notch as it could be.
Today, Pottermore sent out a reading survey to its beta testers looking for feedback on the books themselves, a sign that the ebook release is at least still on some kind of a schedule, albeit a delayed one.
The questions ranged from the very obvious demographic type questions, such as age group, first language spoken, and unintrusive questions about the ages of family members. But as the survey commenced, it got more in-depth into the responders preferences on the Harry Potter series a whole, their thoughts on e-reading, and how they choose to digitally read if they do so.
Several of the questions pertained to how likely the user would be to buy the ebooks individually versus as an entire set. That is encouraging, given that the original plan for the ebooks was to release them one at a time with a wait period between the release of titles. If the survey leads Pottermore’s analysts to believe enough users would prefer to buy the ebooks as a complete set, perhaps they will decide to honor that preference.
From the email announcement:
“As well as refining and improving the Pottermore experience while it is in Beta, we are busy preparing the Pottermore Shop, which will allow people to buy the Harry Potter stories as eBooks for the first time, as well as download the digital audio books.
Whether you are an avid eBook reader, someone who loves printed books, or you just read occasionally, we’d really appreciate you taking part in our book survey.”