Sunday, June 15, 2008

Amazon's Tactics

The NY Times reports on the on-going feud between some UK publishers - specifically Hachette - and Amazon is doing the physical store equivalent of taking the books off the shelves or out of the front window and putting them in the stock room for all those publishers that will not give them better terms. The tactics point to Amazon's willingness to go after the biggest publishers as well as the smaller ones that have fewer resources. From the article:
The struggle comes at a time that Amazon’s power as a bookseller is increasing, with sales growing online in an otherwise tepid global book market. Some publishers fear that with the introduction of Amazon’s Kindle electronic reader, the company will rise into a position to be able to demand more concessions.
“The buy button is their weapon of choice and that’s how they impose market discipline,” said Paul Aiken, executive director of the Authors Guild, an American trade group that also briefly lost the buy icon, for titles sold from, a print-on-demand service for infrequently purchased works. “This is such a clear indication that once they have the clout they are willing to use it to the full extent that they can. It’s ugly with Amazon and will probably get uglier.”

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