Your Kindle reads you
Here is a disturbing story about how iPads, Kindles, Nooks, and other eReaders monitor your reading behavior and report it back.
For centuries, reading has largely been a solitary and private act, an intimate exchange between the reader and the words on the page. But the rise of digital books has prompted a profound shift in the way we read, transforming the activity into something measurable and quasi-public.
The major new players in e-book publishing—Amazon, Apple and Google—can easily track how far readers are getting in books, how long they spend reading them and which search terms they use to find books. Book apps for tablets like the iPad, Kindle Fire and Nook record how many times readers open the app and how much time they spend reading. Retailers and some publishers are beginning to sift through the data, gaining unprecedented insight into how people engage with books.
In a related feature, interactive fiction publisher Coliloquy (yes, it really does have that spelling) describes the “perfect man,” as divined from monitoring its romance-novel readers, but that description is simply too silly to quote.