Amazon is really excited about the idea of being able to lower prices on e-books, and I don’t know about you guys, but I’m happy for them. If I had a bookstore, and someone came in and told me I wasn’t allowed to sell my books for whatever price I wanted to sell my books for, I’d be pretty dismayed. I mean, I always scratch my head when I see an e-book selling for more than the list price for the physical book. I actually get pretty annoyed. And I’m sure Amazon, is like, “Oh god, we know, and we’re sorry about that. It makes no sense.”
And it’s not like Apple is some poor little company that is going to be eaten by Amazon. I mean, right? If Amazon’s plan is to sell e-books at a loss so that it can gain more market share, Apple can do the same. Also, earlier this year, I put together an e-book for Longreads, and Amazon made it really easy for us to sell it. Longreads also tried to get the e-book in Apple’s iBooks store, and on Barnes and Noble’s online site, but it got stuck in some sort of e-book approval limbo, so anyone who wanted to buy the book had to go to Amazon to get it. So! If Amazon’s competitors really want to get more of the e-book marketshare, they really need to get with the program. I do feel bad for the truly, small independent bookstores, though there is one near my apartment that sells used and rare books, and they look like they actually get some decent business. Also, the library, you guys. The library is great!
[Edit: Cheaper e-books is a good thing (i.e. shouldn’t cost more than the physical book), but books that are too cheap aren’t. Please read Emily’s and Kate’s comments below.]
[Note: Sometimes, if you click on one of our links to Amazon, and then you end up buying something, we get a tiny bit of money. The Billfold is part of Amazon’s affiliates program. Logan and I aren’t keeping that money. If we do get any money from those links, we’re planning on putting it in a budget to pay our wonderful writers. So click away!]