This morning Amazon wrote a note to readers: “Hachette has disallowed the sale of ebooks except on agency terms effective as of 12:01 am this morning.” According to the note, eBooks from the publisher may be unavailable until April 3.
Amazon customers have responded passionately in the Amazon forums. A reader named Panama has launched a thread to “boycott agency books”. They wrote: “Now is the time to vote with dollars. Just say no to agency books.” As of this writing, the post has only generated one response.
One new Kindle user complained about quality of eBooks: “Don’t expect me to pay for an e-book much over the price of the lowest priced paperback. So far what I’ve consistently seen of ridiculously numerous formatting errors, lack of adequate hyperlinking, and nonexistent cover art in the commercial e-books does not warrant the prices you are attempting to receive.” Another reader added: “Amazon please identify under which model each ebook is sold near the buy button. The name of the publisher (top of the organization not a subsidiary) would be great also.”
Stay tuned for more Amazon news all day. Here is where we stand so far: Penguin has not reached an eBook agreement with Amazon and Hachette has made its official transition to the agency model–transitioning on Amazon with some “hiccups.” Meanwhile, Simon & Schuster and HarperCollins have reached an agency model agreement with Amazon.