First, read this post by Smashwords founder Mark Coker.
Then tell me how you feel about PayPal dictating what Smashwords can sell. Sure, the site's turned into Smutwords lately. But offensive material is the price you pay for a 100% free market of written material.
My view is that PayPal needs to think hard about taking the moral high ground. Because if it wants to "go there," it needs to look at every transaction it processes.
I figure you're just joshin'. John, but wouldn't it be logical for another company to emerge for this. Not the really ugly stuff, but just general erotica and porn? Have their own venue economy like the X Video stores.
BTW, difference between erotica and porn? A photographer once told me it's whether or not the model is looking into the lens. (I'd blush to say where I was looking at the time)
But there must be some similar rule of thumb for prose porn.
Google Checkout or Wallet or whatever it is now is another competitor. Maybe Smashwords will use that if it doesn't already. And, yeah, it's the 'grinder that makes Smashwords special. That and its distribution abilities. You can upload to lots of retailers at once. Still waiting for it to work out the problem with Amazon.
This isn't the first time Paypal has done this to ebook publishers, but I guess this is the first time you guys have run up against it. They've had this policy in place for a number of years.
Didn't know that. Who else have they put the foot down on?
I don't remember which publishers were stomped on, but it was for sales of erotica.
Let me just ask, how many think this is because of outside legal pressure on PayPal and how many think it's just because they want to throw their weight around or some such autonomous reason?
I don't think there's been any outside legal pressure on PayPal. I don't think the reason is autonomous, I think it's the same thing that credit card companies and cable providors and a few other places have gone through - it's optics, as they say and they're mostly worried about how shareholders feel about it.
There's a history of banks and other financial institutions distancing themselves from porn (at least publicly, they still usually find a way to profit from it). Just google credit cards and porn.
Sounds like you're pretty familiar with porn credit, there John. Just don't eat Cheetos while you're watching those films.
Oh, it's all research ;). There's some stuff about the online porn business in my novel, Dirty Sweet. Of course, now I forget if I did the research for the novel or tried to 'write what I know...'
(and if you're thinking about buying Dirty Sweet I should let you know that starting tomorrow my first three novels will be on sale as e-books - all three books for $9.99 - this BSP is pretty well hidden inside this thread, isn't it?)
Very surreptitious, John