aba-logo1Publishers Weekly reports that the American Booksellers Association has become the latest bookstore entity to join the boycott of books produced by Amazon’s publishing arm. Indeed, the ABA’s for-profit subsidiary, IndieCommerce, has begun removing those titles from its database.

IndieCommerce director Matt Supko wrote in an email announcement that the move was in response to Amazon’s policy of “locking in e-book exclusives which other retailers are not allowed to sell.” IndieCommerce has adopted a new policy of listing only “titles that are made available to retailers for sale in all available formats”. Individual bookstores can still choose to carry Amazon titles as custom products.

The odd thing is, the titles Amazon is publishing will have e-book versions available for sale in all e-book formats by retail channels who wish to carry them, via Amazon’s distribution deal with Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Even publishing-industry observer Mike Shatzkin noted that in the article I covered last night. But IndieCommerce and the ABA seem to be acting as if this is not the case. Wonder why that is?

(Found via The Bookseller.)


  1. I think you misunderstand. Amazon has said that the ebooks will be exclusive to Amazon — I believe for the first 3 months, but possibly longer — and that only the pbook will be available to everyone. This is a battle over exclusivity. If the publishers and the bookstores lose this battle to Amazon, it is all over for them.

  2. Kind of awful to see ABA do this. Basically this means that ABA itself is obsolete and over. In a way, I think that’s good. Because these same booksellers have been playing games for years. We have so-called “indie” books sites that do nothing but bash Amazon and tell us to go shop at “indie” bookstores. But do any of these bookstores carry titles of “indie” authors? Nope. Only Amazon does that. So personally I’m happy to see these other bookstores struggle and close. They want me to buy books there, but they won’t carry my own books!

  3. How good to see another author stand up for Amazon! While we look for publisher who will stoop to reviewing our work, Amazon Kindle is there to put that work online for readers to browse. It seems the title of every article seen on this publishing news site is a down with Amazon article. I say bully for Amazon!

The TeleRead community values your civil and thoughtful comments. We use a cache, so expect a delay. Problems? E-mail newteleread@gmail.com.