Saturday, May 10, 2014

Books may be cheaper at Barnes & Noble–also online

Barnes & Nobel is just one more click and it could save you money. More on the continuing saga of Amazon and Hachette Book Group that I pointed to yesterday.

This morning the NY Times has a follow up story regarding Amazon slowing delivery of books by Hachette Book Group authors, some of which are very popular authors. The story; Writers Feel an Amazon-Hachette Spat, has more interesting points and is really worth reading. It shows what a marketplace bully has the amazonbullysmpotential to do, and it can hurt both the supplier as well as the consumer.

Amazon appears to be using market manipulation to control its suppliers and I thought that was illegal? There is also the point that Amazon is a publisher and perhaps is trying to hurt the competition via it’s own marketplace. Restraint of trade? Violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act? Is this something our delightful congress should look into?

In todays story an interesting point is that books by author Malcom Gladwell are on “2 to 3 week delay” at Amazon however they are immediately available at Barnes & Nobel, one bookstore that Amazon has not been able to close with their tactics. Hachette Group says they fulfill Amazon’s request immediately.

Not only is the book available at Barnes & Noble the print version is $3.00 cheaper. It is also available on the Nook for $9.99. I have the Nook app on my laptop (Windows 8.1) as well as my tablet. I have purchased magazines from Barnes & Noble (The Kindle app from Amazon won’t let you read magazines – you have to buy a Kindle). I have owned a Kindle and really would rather read on a tablet that has many other features in today’s world.

Amazon is definitely playing the bully role in this and, at least in my case, I will consider Barnes & Noble for my books and magazines in the future. This won’t be difficult – http://www.barnesandnoble.com. See, that was easy.

I still think Amazon’s tactics should be looked into, Amazon is also a publisher. On the other hand perhaps this is true Darwin like Capitalism.

More reading:

The Christian Science Monitor – Hachette Book Group says Amazon is deliberately delaying shipments of their titles

The Author’s Guild – Amazon v Stephen Colbert? Amazon Slow-walks Books by Gladwell, Colbert, Others in Spat with Hachette