Looks like Fictionwise is becoming more obsolete by the day. During the spring they discontinued their membership program in the face of the agency pricing changes. Now it looks like “micropay rebates”, the last bastion of their old system, is being discontinued.
Micropay rebates were essentially an incentive program to shop at Fictionwise on an ongoing basis. You earned the rebate credits for books you purchased and could apply them towards other transactions on the site. Effectively, the rebates significantly lowered the overall cost of buying through Fictionwise, even if the individual items were not cheaper.
Specifically, Fictionwise says:
Until June 2010 Fictionwise had a Micropay System that allowed deposits by members and supported micropay rebate promotions on some ebooks. Rebates and deposits for this system have been discontinued due to eBook industry changes and other factors. If you have an existing balance you may still use it until it is exhausted, but no further deposits may be made and there will be no further Micropay Rebates other than Buywise Large Transaction Rebates.
Now that this system is gone, there’s no advantage to shopping at Fictionwise. Their prices are not competitive, they are reportedly also phasing out their magazine subscriptions, and their main formats (ePUB and secure eReader) are basically redundant with the B&N ebook store. I’ve said for some time that B&N should absorb Fictionwise and eReader into their main ebookstore, but it looks like they’re taking the long way. Rather than make it quick, B&N is letting Fictionwise/eReader die a death by a thousand paper cuts. It’s cruel, and it’s unfortunately similar to how B&N treated their B. Dalton stores, and it means it may be time for anyone with books at Fictionwise to start backing up their purchases.
Do you have many books through Fictionwise? Will you miss them if they slowly fade away? Share your thoughts below!