Special Australian PricesThings cost more in Australia. It's not because of shipping. It's not taxes. It's not the exchange rate. It's Because.
For example, Redshirts costs just over $11 in the US Kindle store, and over $17 in the same store, if you're Australian. Publishers (and other manufacturers, such as game companies) are aware that Australians got stuck paying much more back in the 80s when the Australian dollar was worth 60c US and everything was physical, not electronically transmitted. Once those factors changed, the prices were artificially jacked up because there was an opportunity for money to be made.
I buy 90% of my books in e-form. If I hit an artificially inflated price, I usually just lose interest in the book and go buy something else. [The highest e-book novel price I've encountered was $27. I've heard tell of much higher.]
Special Australian Release DatesFrom The Hobbit (released a week later than the rest of the world) to Doctor Who, to entire series of television, to e-books with Australian release dates of Never.
The Scalzi example above is an interesting one, because he gets quite shirty with people who complain about the prices and availability of his books when he posts about them on his blog. His stance being that he needs to maximise his income and selling by region is one of the ways to do it, so don't complain to him.
Yeah, perfectly justifiable attitude, but, well, I guess I'm no loss to him as a reader.
KDP SelectKDP Select, which Amazon brought in at the end of last year, offers self-publishers advantages (most importantly better treatment by its algorithms) in exchange for exclusivity. It instantly divided the self-publishing community, and continues to be a large point of contention.
This year Amazon upped by ante by giving favourable royalties to those in Select (in all its newer stores, those in Select get 70% royalty, and the rest of us get 35%).
I hate exclusivity so, even though I don't sell particularly well on the other retailers, I won't go near Select. But it annoys the heck out of me because (either coincidentally or as a result), my sales momentum dropped considerably when it came in. I've never again sold in the numbers I managed just prior to Select.
"Bullying"The thing which annoyed me most about all the reviewer bullying dramas this past year is the complete incomprehension of the word "bullying". Bullying is not having a different opinion from a crowd or an individual. Bullying is not saying you didn't like something. Even if you express that opinion harshly, or with funny pictures.
Extra-infuriating was the fact that most of the really over-the-top "bullying" accusations of the year revolved around politely-worded, even-handed reviews which happened to discuss the poor depiction of women.
There's other things which annoyed me over the year (the Australian media's campaign against Julia Gillard for a start), but these are the big ones, so that's it for my Christmas Eve grinch.
What brought out the bah-humbug in you this year?