I am very grateful to Hákon Gunnarsson who has given me permission to post his response about FREE books from a reader's perspective although he is a writer as well.
Rick I like your article, and to tell the truth, I've been skeptical of the free book idea for some time. I don't have any experience of putting a book out there for free, but as a reader I'm very open to downloading anything that looks interesting, and is free. The problem is that I have probably 400-500 books on my kindle. Out of those I've probably read less than 50. I've reviewed most of those I've read, but the rest gathers digital dust without being read or reviewed, so the 400-450 authors whose books I've downloaded, but not read have got little out of it. I'm told it can elevate the author temporarily within the amazon ranking system, but that is about it. To me, and I'm no expert, it sounds better to sell it, even if it is at a low price.