UPDATE – 2008-06-23 – A member of O’Reilly’s editing team commented that this privilege has *NOT* been discontinued, and all O’Reilly authors should receive a free Safari account. Thanks a bunch, Mary, for the clarification (see comments for more).
I learned from one of the authors of the recently released second (read: first, squared) edition of High Performance MySQL that O’Reilly apparently did away with the idea of giving O’Reilly book authors free Safari accounts. Lame.
I do not know why in the world they would discontinue this offering for authors. Perhaps they’re not aware, but a great many of the O’Reilly authors are also bloggers. Tech bloggers. Some of them write on the O’Reilly blogs themselves, but almost all of them blog outside of that arena as well. And guess what they blog about? Well, lots of stuff, but there’s plenty of blogging about “something I learned”, or “this book rocks”, etc. Heck, we even blog about products we use — I’ve even blogged about Safari… *today* even!
In a world where people are paid to blog about products, it surprises me that O’Reilly wouldn’t offer people who are already actively blogging in and around their content, and who have actually formally joined the O’Reilly family, the opportunity to become users, and thereby advocates, of their other offerings.
I am an O’Reilly author, and have a free Safari account (we’ll see how long that lasts after this post goes live). I can think of *plenty* of instances where I’ve recommended that people who don’t have an account try to get one, or try to get their employer to get them (or their whole site) an account. I consult (as do TONS of O’Reilly authors), and I’ve also recommended to my clients that they get Safari accounts for their technical staff. Had O’Reilly not offered me the free account, that would never have happened. I am confident that the amount of money grossed by O’Reilly due to my big mouth since 2005 is approaching 6 figures, if it hasn’t exceeded that already.
Not to mention the fact that having the account is a very real, very sincerely felt way to make the authors feel appreciated, because lord knows we don’t write books for the money.
So, Tim, do you think you could find it in your budget to give the guys with probably the most popular MySQL Performance blog (and probably consulting outfit as well) free Safari accounts? Please? If they agree to put some badge on their blog or something? (I’d gladly do that as well).
Here’s to hoping they see the light, fellas.