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Friday, October 23, 2009

News on the Book Price Wars

The American Booksellers Association is throwing down the gauntlet over the Amazon, Target, and Wal-Mart's bestseller price wars. The ABA believes it's illegal predatory pricing that will hurt the book industry. They could be right.

Think of it this way. When a movie first comes out you won't find it below $15 anywhere, not even at Costco. In fact, it's quite a while before it drops below that price, if ever. Why? Because the price is controlled. All parties involved get the chance to profit off their product. Up until this announcement by Target, Amazon, and Wal-Mart the price of books was pretty steady at the release of the book. You might get a discount if you had a bookstore card or went to Costco, but otherwise not. This gave the publisher, bookseller, and the author the chance to profit off their product.

It seems odd to me that big conglomerates who don't even specialize in books are trying to seize the book industry and squeeze the blood from it. The worst part is, authors will feel this crunch the worst. Out of all parties involved in book selling, the author gets the least amount of profit off the book they wrote.

For us consumers there are other ways to get our discounts. Worst case scenario, we can wait for the paperback to come out and pay a lot less. Most of us who are in a crunch do this anyways. So me, I'm cheering on the ABA because they're standing up for not only booksellers and publishers, but the authors! Read all about their plea to the Department of Justice here:
http://news.bookweb.org/7130.html

2 comments:

  1. Thanks for keeping us updated. I'm going to post link to this post in my twitter account!

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  2. You bet, and thank you! Both writers and readers need to keep informed on what's going on here. It could impact publishing. Good or bad, who knows yet. . .

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