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Disappointing Results and a Scandal: Amazon’s Withdrawal

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Road-Closed

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Promoting local public libraries since fifteen years, and running a great website, PublicLibraries http://www.publiclibraries.com/  reported about Amazon’s withdrawal from becoming a big trade publisher:  “Amazon is toning down its plans to become a full scale publisher. The retreat from publishing appears to be a result of black listing of author’s signed with Amazon by brick and mortar book retailers.”

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Opposition from Bookstores
“Amazon has struggled to gain traction for its publishing division. It appears that Amazon underestimated the amount of opposition that it would experience from the traditional publishing and book retailing world. Major book retailer Barnes & Noble refused to carry any of the titles published by Amazon. Amazon has also had trouble attracting major authors to its division.”
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Disappointing Results and a Scandal
“Authors that have signed with Amazon have experienced disappointing results. Amazon’s first big title, Penny Marshall’s My Mother Was Nuts, performed poorly in print sales. This was largely due to the fact that brick and mortar books refused to carry the Amazon title. Even the eBook edition was effectively blocked outside of the Amazon marketplace as Google, Barnes & Noble Nook Store and Apple iBookstore all refused to distribute the digital version.”

Industry Newsletter Shelf Awareness also said that “In connection with [Kirshbaum’s] departure, the most ambitious part of Amazon’s publishing operations will be scaled back. Already several editorial people have left or been let go, and Amazon has not been a factor in bidding on major books the way it had been just two years ago.”

Wallstreet Journal Online wrote: “In quick succession, Mr. Kirshbaum signed up a number of well-known writers and personalities, among them actress and director Penny Marshall and best-selling writer Timothy Ferriss. The signings worried rival publishers who were concerned that Amazon’s deep coffers would enable it to pluck many of the book industry’s biggest stars.  In January 2012, Mr. Kirshbaum’s efforts were effectively checkmated when rival bookseller Barnes & Noble Inc. said it wouldn’t put titles published by Amazon on its shelves. A number of other retailers followed suit, making Amazon a less attractive alternative for many writers and their agents. The big-name signings stopped…”

Read the whole story how bookstores and trade publishers fought back here on PublicLibraries, NY Times, Gigaom.com and PublishersWeekly.

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Libraries: More Popular Than Ever!

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The public library: Historic artifact or adaptive success

Courtesy of: CityTownInfo.com
infographics/public-library-adaptive-success

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In the face of new technologies, libraries are adapting to a new reality and they are more popular than ever!

81 % of American adults use the Internet and almost as many people agree that free computer and internet access (including Wi-Fi) are very important services that libraries offer. 62% of libraries are the sole provider of computers and Wi-Fi for free in their community.  Libraries also offer technology assistance, help with social services applications, tutoring and advice for job-seeking patrons.
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Between 2000 and 2009, public libraries increased by 1.7 percent, but the national population increased by 11.7 percent.
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San Antonio, Texas, is planning to open a public library without books this fall.  Instead, it will have computers, tablets, laptops and e-readers with pre-loaded titles.  While the book-less library has been attempted in the U.S. in 2002, it didn’t last: patrons eventually asked for actual books.
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Sources:
Pew Research Center, “Demographics of Internet Users”, 2012
American Library Association, “State of America’s Libraries Report”, 2012
Institute of Museum and Library Services, Public Libraries Survey (Fiscal Year 2009), 2011
NPR, “A Launch of the Bookless Library”, 2013

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If you would like to get help in all things publishing, have your book heavily promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites: We offer all this and more for only a “token” of $1 / day for 3 months. Learn more about this individual book marketing help: http://www.111Publishing.com/seminar

If you enjoyed this blog post, please feel free to check out all previous posts of this blog (there are more than 720 of them : ) if you haven’t already. Why not sign up to receive them regularly by email? Just click on “Follow” in the upper line on each page – and then on “LIKE” next to it. There is also the “SHARE” button underneath each article where you can submit the article to Pinterest, Google+, Twitter, Chime.in, Facebook, Tumblr and StumpleUpon.

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