Monday, October 21, 2013

Battle of 9.99

Here's another interesting tidbit for all of you"

Publishers Weekly has also published the book The Battle of 9.99, a book about the now infamous price setting at Amazon. I know that some of you remember this. Some might even remember getting into an argument on either side. For those who don't immediately remember, here's the story in a nutshell:

Amazon wanted to set their ebook prices at $9.99 to entice readers to their then still newborn Kindle e-book reader. It meant that they were taking a deep price cut in their profits, but they were really pushing for these readers to succeed since let's face it: previous attempts by other companies to market e-readers had failed spectacularly. This didn't sit well with many of the big publishers, who threatened to pull their e-book contracts with Amazon if they didn't reset the prices to what the publisher specifically wanted. Now the messed up part is that the publishers supposedly didn't lose any money coming in, Amazon did. However according to this book, what really scared the pants off of the publishers was really the idea that Amazon would undermine the industry.

As many know, this sparked widespread condemnation of first Amazon (with people assuming that they changed it voluntarily) and then later the publishers themselves. People petitioned, posted negative reviews, and some even railed against the authors, many of whom were actually for the lower price setting. This price war brought a lot of attention to the ebook world and to the idea of ebook prices in general, regardless of how you stood on the matter.

So now Publishers Weekly has put out a 58 page book about the whole shebang from the viewpoint of Andrew Albanese. It's going for $1.99 on Amazon, if anyone's interested. I might give in and buy it myself so I can give it a whirl.

Further Reading:
*'The Battle of $9.99,' a PW Original E-book
*Amazon page
*ebooks: Apple is Guilty in The Battle of the $9.99

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