The digital publishing wars: Amazon v Hachette

Amazon’s dominance of the book retail market is already hurting publishers – does it also threaten authors and book lovers? Simon Wilson investigates.

What’s happened?

All summer, a row has been simmering between Amazon, the online retailer that sells around 90% of the digital books published in Britain, and Hachette, one of the world’s largest publishers.

The argument is primarily about the price of digital books, or ebooks. Amazon wants the right to sell the vast majority of ebooks for $9.99, whereas Hachette wants to carry on charging variable prices.

Amazon, which says it’s happy to keep [...]

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