Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Safari Online Changes

I just waded through a survey gathering info about an upcoming change to Safari Books Online.  I’ve been a long-time subscriber to Safari and it’s helped me through any number of tough spots — for a very small price you get access to a huge library of books, all of which you can search through.  The only hitch is that you subscribe for slots on a bookshelf, and you have to put a book on your bookshelf to read anything past the preface and TOC.  It’s flexible, it’s inexpensive, it’s wicked big with gobs of material.

Now it looks like they’re going to bust apart that huge library into four separate sections for biz productivity, developers, information technology, and graphics/web.  You’ll have to pay $50 per month to have acecss to all four libraries.

That sucks.  I likely won’t keep up my subscription if they move to that model.  The attraction of Safari to me is the wide range of material I have access to — stuff I’d never buy because I don’t use it.

I hope plenty of their customers pitch a fit as I did.


Anonymous said...

I have been using books24x7.com for last 1.5 years. My subscription just ran out and am looking at safari now. Books24x7 is like 400/year or 3 years for 900. 300 a year is not too bad. The good thing about 24x7 is that you have full access and there isn't any bookshelf concept. The downside is that it is a little more than I would like to spend.
Let me know if you find any solutions that are middle of the road.

Anonymous said...

I am also a subscriber to Safari and received the same survey questionnaire. I responded and told them it was a bad idea. Breaking up the library wasn’t realistic for the price they were asking. I am a developer but sometimes I check out some of the Peachpit titles. I mean, am I going to buy another library just for a few other books? Nope. Anyway, I just received the September Safari Newsletter and apparently they are listening. Safari is now launching an entire Safari Library concept “with this new all-content, no-rules service.” Safari Library will get rid of my bookshelf and now I can add as many books as I want there. The newsletter also gives subscribers props for answering the survey. Not sure if i will subscribe to the plan since my usage is eratic month to month.

I also called Safari Customer service about an issue I had regarding my account and also thanked them for actually listening to the customer. The guy I spoke with didn’t really know how to respond but said he would pass along the message to the powers that be. Anyway, I think I’ll stick with my current subscription but to the previoius poster, IMHO, Safari content is way better than anything Books 24/7 provides and it has more plans available.

Jason Reed

Anonymous said...

Has anyone checked to see if your local library offers access to Safari or Books 24? Often you can access this material with your library card from home for nothing more than the cost of the card. Just a thought...

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