Amazon competing with publishers, not just bookstores

[Published originally on October 17, 2011]

There was an interesting article in the NY Times about the new strategy of Amazon concerning publishing. They are more and more competing, not only with bookstores, but also with publishers. They are cutting the middleman by signing publishing contracts directly with authors. With the proliferation of tablets, ebooks are more popular than ever. Amazon can control most of the value chain: the reading device the Kindle Fire and the distribution online channel.

Amazon just started giving all authors, whether it publishes them or not, direct access to the Nielsen BookScan sales data, which records how many physical books they are selling in individual markets (cities). It represents a one-on-one communication between authors and their fans that used to happen only on book tours. Recently, Amazon made an obscure German historical novel a best seller without a single professional review.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/17/technology/amazon-rewrites-the-rules-of-book-publishing.html?pagewanted=all

Louis Rhéaume
Infocom Intelligence
louis@infocomintelligence.com