Amazon has been pushing hard to get into publishing this past year, and they’ve announced new imprints in a number of genres. One detail that all of Amazon’s books had in common, and that was that only Amazon sold the ebook. It seems like that is about to backfire on them.
Do you remember back when Barnes & Noble pulled some graphic novels from their shelves because Amazon got an exclusive? Well, it looks like that’s going to be their policy from now on.
Brad Stone of Businessweek posted an official B&N statement over on his gPlus account:
Barnes & Noble has made a decision not to stock Amazon published titles in our store showrooms. Our decision is based on Amazon’s continued push for exclusivity with publishers, agents and the authors they represent. These exclusives have prohibited us from offering certain eBooks to our customers. Their actions have undermined the industry as a whole and have prevented millions of customers from having access to content. It’s clear to us that Amazon has proven they would not be a good publishing partner to Barnes & Noble as they continue to pull content off the market for their own self interest. We don’t get many requests for Amazon titles, but If customers wish to buy Amazon titles from us, we will make them available only online at bn.com.
So Amazon’s plans to have HMH distribute the paper editions isn’t going to help them any. I’m not surprised; I half expected B&N to take a pass on Amazon books.
But it does raise an interesting question: will B&N apply the same policy to all ebook exclusives? If so, they will have to pull the Harry Potter ebooks once the Pottermore ebookstore opens.