Right after the fall of communism, a Belgian company sent two representatives to look into the feasibility of selling their products in Russia. Two different reports were received.
“Nobody wears Western shoes here,” wrote the first representative, “if we install a factory here, we will suffer heavy losses.”
“Nobody wears Western shoes here,” wrote the second representative, “If we install a factory here, we will start the fashion trend and sell the entire production.”
Paulo Coelho is a Brazilian author who has sold more than 100 million books, which include 14 short story collections and the novel “The Alchemist.” He has been a fan of the Internet since the early 1990s. He spends at least three hours a day online, writing e-mails back and forth with his readers and posting photos on Flickr, MySpace and a blog.
Coelho’s online activities also include promoting pirated copies of his own books. Since 2005 he’s been directing his readers to an online site where they can download his books, in languages from German to Japanese, for free. “I always thought that when, at the beginning of your career, you strive to be read, you can’t change your mind later and become greedy about it.”