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I'm a little late to the party with this one -- we had a storm yesterday and it knocked out our internet for a while. But in what appears to be fall-out from the iPad release and new competition between Apple and Amazon over ebook sales, Amazon has now halted direct sales of all MacMillan books, including Tor imprints, until MacMillan stops insisting that Amazon honor their price points in marketing their products. In essence, Amazon is trying to bully MacMillan, and by extension other publishers, into charging a certain amount for books. And until they get their way, they've pulled books off their cyber-shelves. Now, on the one hand, Amazon wants to charge less for ebooks than MacMillan, and the MacMillan price point is probably too high. But stopping sales of the books hurts authors and consumers, and given that I have releases due out this coming week and again later in February, I'm not happy about this. Not at all. Here are some links:

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/01/29/amazon-pulls-macmillan-books-over-e-book-price-disagreement/

http://www.boingboing.net/2010/01/29/amazon-and-macmillan.html

http://sleigh.livejournal.com/283370.html

As my friend Laura Anne Gilman points out, this isn't about price, and it's not about saving consumers money. It's about control. Amazon is terrified of the iPad and with good reason. They want to maintain their grip on the publishing biz, and so they're choking off my sales and those of all my friends at Tor and MacMillan in order to get their way. Not cool at all.

Comments

( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
elisel
Jan. 30th, 2010 06:35 pm (UTC)
This is so disappointing! Even with the iPad now on the market, I've enjoyed my Kindle a lot and have -- or at least, had -- every intention of continuing to use it. I was so pleased with it and with Amazon in general until I heard about this.

The company is really shooting itself in the foot with this move. Anyone who enjoys reading enough to be interested in ebooks is bound to recognize how this hurts the authors and are going to be turned off by this. (Not to mention, from a purely selfish perspective, how much a lack of general product availability is going to decrease the interest in purchasing Amazon e-readers.)

Not classy, Amazon!
davidbcoe
Jan. 30th, 2010 11:39 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I don't think it makes much sense, but as others have said, Amazon does stuff like this periodically, takes a beating for it, and then backs down. Interesting business model....
madkestrel
Jan. 30th, 2010 07:38 pm (UTC)
I'm hearing from quite a number of folks that preordered Macmillan titles have also disappeared from the Amazon order page.
davidbcoe
Jan. 30th, 2010 11:40 pm (UTC)
Yes, they have. Including mine. You can still see the books on the site. You can be notified when they become available. But the "buy" and "preorder" buttons are gone.
(Deleted comment)
davidbcoe
Jan. 30th, 2010 11:41 pm (UTC)
Yes, all MacMillan titles, all formats, whether available now or coming available soon. Bullies suck. Stupid bullies with power REALLY suck.
hedwig_snowy
Jan. 30th, 2010 10:53 pm (UTC)
The ole 'cutting off your nose to spite your face' concept...that's one tasty business model right there.

Fortunately, my parents pre-ordered me your book for Christmas, so I'm set, but that is a pain.

I don't know that Amazon has to be completely freaked out about the iPad, but if they were the better option would be to make less money upfront and keep people from buying the iPad in the first place. I think Nintendo did this with the Wii. Not only was it different than the PS3 and the XBox, but the hardware price point was way below either. Doesn't Wal-mart (although not for distributors but for consumers) do this as well?

Amazon does this kind of wacky thing every few months (the last was banning gay literature as porn) and they lose more and more customers every time. Idiots.
davidbcoe
Jan. 30th, 2010 11:42 pm (UTC)
>>Fortunately, my parents pre-ordered me your book for Christmas, so I'm set....<<

Um, I don't think so....
hedwig_snowy
Jan. 31st, 2010 06:02 pm (UTC)
Well...might have to actually go out and help out the local economy then. :-)

That sucks though....

And it might help some (meaning me, at least) start using other sites (it's available on Barnes and Noble's web site).

Guess Amazon couldn't care less...that would be a mistake.

Will drop them a line.
hedwig_snowy
Jan. 30th, 2010 10:56 pm (UTC)
Oh my....

http://www.amazon.com/Dark-Eyes-War-Three-Blood-Southlands/dp/0765316404/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpi_6

"Sign up to be notified when this item becomes available."

My parents (and I) aren't going to be pleased about that....
davidbcoe
Jan. 30th, 2010 11:43 pm (UTC)
Probably couldn't hurt to tell them that you're not pleased.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )

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