Amazon stirs controversy with hardball tactics against publishers


Amazon (AMZN) has escalated a contract-related battle with publisher Hachette by halting pre-orders for a number of Hachette books (inc. J.K. Rowling's latest novel), and removing pages promoting upcoming Hachette titles.

The e-commerce giant is even altering search results, and moving recommendations for 3rd-party titles to prominent spots on Hachette pages. Amazon had already begun delaying shipments of print titles from Hachette, and is doing something similar in Germany for books offered by Bonnier (another publisher it has a dispute with).

The head of a German publishers' association says its antitrust experts are studying whether Amazon's tactics against Bonnier are illegal. Meanwhile, its actions against Hachette have triggered a backlash among U.S. writers/editors.

As it is, Amazon's efforts to publish books under its own imprints have caused friction with the publishers who heavily depend on it.

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Comments (14)
  • Gary J
    , contributor
    Comments (10644) | Send Message
     
    It's called doin bidness. Get over it.
    23 May 2014, 05:35 PM Reply Like
  • rsbduff@gmail.com
    , contributor
    Comments (438) | Send Message
     
    The poor publishers!

     

    I can't believe that Amazon would treat publishers as poorly as they have treated writers for years. It's un-American.....drop the Benghazi investigation and call a committee to investigate this travesty of justice.

     

    May God speed the help for our revered publishers.

     

    RSBDuff
    23 May 2014, 05:50 PM Reply Like
  • SoldHigh
    , contributor
    Comments (991) | Send Message
     
    AMZN acting big enough for the govt to break them up imo
    23 May 2014, 08:03 PM Reply Like
  • jpintoctr
    , contributor
    Comments (716) | Send Message
     
    I agree with @SoldHigh. Amazon predatory pricing policies are destroying small independent bookstores.
    Monopolies are always bad for consumers and for the industry as a whole. In culture are also censorship and that is unacceptable.
    Writers that have first hand knowledge here is an example. Link:
    http://on.fb.me/1nkGrkp

     

    http://on.ft.com/1nkGqwN
    23 May 2014, 10:56 PM Reply Like
  • Street Instincts
    , contributor
    Comments (102) | Send Message
     
    Predatory pricing policies? You do realize small independent book sellers use Amazon to sell books. This is nothing but a Hachette job on the AMZN stock price.
    3 Jun 2014, 09:16 AM Reply Like
  • alpha321
    , contributor
    Comments (179) | Send Message
     
    Deplorable. Amazon makes significant revenues from among others, book publishers. By penalizing book sellers who don't play hardball with Amazon, the company is allegedly price fixing.

     

    Amazon should be broken up, and investigated.

     

    I will now spend my money at bookstores that stock Hachette.
    24 May 2014, 01:03 AM Reply Like
  • manfredthree
    , contributor
    Comments (3103) | Send Message
     
    A little research is in order. Here, Hachette is the publisher and AMZN is the 'bookstore' retailer. This is a negotiation that will impact the share of end price going to AMZN vs Hachette. Authors should be directing their angst to Hachette if they believe Hachette's stance will reduce sales overall. Perhaps it is Hachette that is relying too much on 'public opinion' to pressure AMZN. AMZN has no monopoly, direct or indirect, but they do give publishers enormous reach and distribution in an almost instantaneous fashion. AMZN is not a public utility and has every right to negotiate its margin with Hachette. Some have been conned into believing this is 'AMZN vs writers' and it is anything but.
    24 May 2014, 09:18 AM Reply Like
  • Gary J
    , contributor
    Comments (10644) | Send Message
     
    Amazon makes book cheaper. Cheaper = better.
    24 May 2014, 06:56 AM Reply Like
  • DanoX
    , contributor
    Comments (3470) | Send Message
     
    And Amazon still can't make a Profit pathetic.
    24 May 2014, 04:29 PM Reply Like
  • Gary J
    , contributor
    Comments (10644) | Send Message
     
    Because the CEO chooses market share instead at this time. Educate yourself.
    24 May 2014, 05:53 PM Reply Like
  • manfredthree
    , contributor
    Comments (3103) | Send Message
     
    Well, just sitting here enjoying a bunch of snacks (including some great cashews) that came in last week on Prime. Great deals, high quality, and simple. More time for everything else. Once you do this, you never go back, so we think retention is the powerful X factor.
    25 May 2014, 04:29 PM Reply Like
  • Johnwoods41
    , contributor
    Comments (177) | Send Message
     
    I don't think media and social opinion will be on Amazons side on this one, I think they will lose a few customers on this as people look to buy these titles away, it's really not that difficult to click on another website is it?
    28 May 2014, 03:52 PM Reply Like
  • Gary J
    , contributor
    Comments (10644) | Send Message
     
    A for profit company looking to make a better deal. Imagine that!
    28 May 2014, 05:04 PM Reply Like
  • Street Instincts
    , contributor
    Comments (102) | Send Message
     
    Amazon took 'err jobbs.
    30 May 2014, 10:31 AM Reply Like
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