Amazon, Publishers and the Future of Books

shutterstock_191668427In their current business conflict, Amazon and publisher Hachette are risking – and losing – so much.

Amazon is risking its reputation among customers as the place to get everything quickly and cheaply and losing out on sales of Hachette titles. Hachette is risking its reputation among authors and agents as a company able to effectively distribute books and is likely losing a tremendous amount of money in sales at the same time.

With both companies putting so much on the line in their current dispute, they must believe that they are fighting over the future of book publishing itself. Who should profit on the creation and distribution of books, and how much?

More to come on July 9.

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Radio Times (
DBW joins the New York Times on NPR to discuss the Amazon-Hachette dispute.

Delays on Hachette’s The Silkworm (Pub Lunch)
There were delays getting The Silkworm up for sale as an ebook in the Kindle store today. And customers who wanted to buy the hardcover edition were looking at wait times of one-to-two months.

Indie Booksellers: Mixed Results Hitting Back at Amazon (PW)
With only short lead time and a lack of expertise moving big best-sellers, indie booksellers didn’t have much luck taking advantage of Amazon vs. Hachette to sell more copies of The Silkworm.

Apple Discounts Hachette Ebooks (BusinessWeek)
Detailing what the second- or third-largest ebook retailer in the U.S. is doing to take advantage of the Amazon-Hachette dispute.

Libertarians for Amazon (Chicago Sun Times)
Editor-in-chief of libertarian journal Nick Gillespie defends Amazon and Jeff Bezos as being consumer-centric and just doing business the best it can, mocking naysayers in the process.

Kobo’s Michael Tamblyn on Kobo in the U.S. (
Contrary to many reports about Kobo’s U.S. office closure and its note to Canadian authorities explaining that it was refocusing away from the U.S., the company’s president and chief content officer Michael Tamblyn says of the company’s “commitment to the U.S. market,” “altered, yes, in the sense that it is constantly evolving. Diminished, no.”

Discovering Innovation in Digital Books (DBW)
Digital publishing gives us so many opportunities to be creative with content – opportunities we rarely take. In this free webcast, learn about the most innovative digital publishing projects.

Star Wars Scene Maker (DBW)
Disney Publishing’s new app allows users to create their own scenes from Star Wars.

From Scroll to Codex to Ebook (Christian Science Monitor)
“By allowing for a kind of shallowness, the book makes it possible to achieve a kind of depth,” writes Ruth Walker in the Christian Science Monitor of the book’s advantage over the scroll of allowing a reader to jump to any point in the text. Ebooks only enhance this ability with functionality like search.

Related: Like this kind of story? More from DBW’s Corey Pressman

Used Ebook Website Opens in Europe (The Digital Reader) is a Netherlands-based website that allows users to buy and sell pre-owned ebooks. It relies on the “honor system” when it comes to ensuring sellers don’t sell the same file twice.


Header image credit: Nataliya Hora /


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