Monday, August 11, 2014
Amazon and book publishers need each other. It is sad that one of the largest publishers has entered a pitched battle with the largest bookstore on earth. It is equally unhappy that Amazon sparked this war because it wants to get its way with marketing e-books. As the PR war continues, the real loser is the public, which can't get easy access to books it wants to buy. Amazon might be right in pushing its pricing policies, but it was foolish to ban books from its site that come from Hachette. The only result was to rile authors who publicly blamed Amazon for its practices in a huge two-page advertisement in yesterday's New York Times. Were I Jeff Bezos, I would publicly proclaim victory and leave the field with what remains of a shredded reputation. But then, Bezos didn't get where he is today by giving in easily. This might be his flaw or a secret to his success. In any event the longer that Amazon fights with Hachette, the worse it gets for Amazon.