Letters to the Editor: If you binge watch TV, you have time to read a ‘long’ book
March 12, 2013 – 9:31 am
In my letter to the editor, I state that “the average rate for books on the New York Times’ Best Seller list is approximately eight times that for TV.” I used a figure that was “roughly” about 20X the rate for movies. I used the phrase “average rate” because I’ve read many books that have had the same sales figure for each year.
But in reality, “the average rate for books on the New York Times’ Best Seller list is approximately eight times that for TV.” It is “roughly” 20X the rate for movies, not eight times. The first paragraph is misleading and incorrect.
It is only misleading in that it implies that the books are selling at a rate “approximately” 20X the rate for TV. That’s not what is happening. It’s an incorrect implication or an oversimplification. It’s my opinion, not the opinion of any official group, including the New York Times or the Amazon book chart.
I also note that the average rate for books on the NYT best seller list is eight times that rate for movies. While that rate is approximate, my number (assuming it is the correct number), is eight times. That figure isn’t correct.
The average rate for books on the NYT’s best seller list is six times the rate for movies. In other words, the six times rate for movies is the “rough” rate of the average rate for books. My figure (six times) is wrong. My figure also is incorrect. Since the average rates for movies and books are different, using either rate to calculate the sales figure is incorrect.
As an editorial staff member at the New York Times, I have written many of the Sunday book sections since 1998. And the best-seller lists that the New York Times runs are also subject to the usual random variance.