Our blogging comrade-in-arms Rafat Ali complains that Amazon PR gave Steven Levy access to Jeff Bezos for a huge cover story about the new Kindle, but won’t give Paidcontent an interview at tomorrow’s press event. Rafat, we hear you!
Except…Paidcontent already knows plenty about the Kindle, and has known about it for a while: It just hasn’t told its readers about it. Why? Because Paidcontent is working with Amazon on a blog subscription service that will launch with the Kindle this week…
Levy refers to the offering in his piece: “You can also subscribe to selected blogs, which cost either 99 cents or $1.99 a month per blog.” Rafat says his blog is working with Amazon, but says he can’t say more, and points out that he’s been keeping quiet about it for a couple of months, at least:
Also, the business side of our company has been under an NDA with Amazon, as our news feeds are part of the news section in the reader…while we will still honour that NDA and not disclose any other details (we haven’t, even in the two previous stories we did on it), the Newsweek story pretty much has it all, and more.
Rafat isn’t the only blogger who’s been mum about this news story. Both Om Malik and Robert Scoble say they’ve signed NDAs with Amazon (AMZN), presumably because they’re part of the same program; we assume that there are several others who simply haven’t bothered to tell us that they can’t tell us.
(UPDATE: From Amazon press release: The Kindle Store has over 300 blogs on topics ranging from Internet and technology to culture, lifestyle, and humour, to politics and opinion. Examples include Slashdot, TechCrunch, BoingBoing, The Onion,The Huffington Post, and ESPN blogs. Blogs are updated and downloadedwirelessly throughout the day so Kindle customers can read blogs whenever and wherever they want. Wireless delivery of blogs costs as little as $0.99 each per month and also includes a free two-week trial.)
We don’t think this is a cardinal sin, by the way: Rafat, Om and Robert are all figuring out what it means to be a journalist-entrepreneur (as are the people who bring you this blog). Presumably that means you can’t always tell your readers everything you know. But it should also make it harder to be self-righteous.