Tuesday, 5 July 2011

A monopoly of online booksellers

News that Amazon has bought the Book Depository opens the prospect of a near monopoly of online booksellers, given that Amazon already own AbeBooks, the online used book store (and incidentally via Abe a chunk of LibraryThing).

Now the reason that people use online stores are twofold (a) they're cheaper (or should be) and (b) they have everything. Here in Australia we have Borders still hanging on, and well almost no one else. Borders of course is not cheaper, and doesn't have everything, but at least you can have a browsing experience.

Otherwise you buy your books from overseas. And now you really don't have any alternative to the Big A, which doesn't strike me as healthy. One only hopes that competition overseas keeps the buggers honest ...

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