The world’s biggest bookstore is a bit smaller these days.
Amazon’s secret campaign to discourage customers from buying books by Hachette, one of the big New York publishers, burst into the open on Friday.
The uneasy relationship between the retailer and the writing community, which needs Amazon but fears its power, immediately soured as authors took to Twitter to denounce what they saw as bullying.
Among Amazon’s tactics against Hachette, some of which it has been employing for months, are charging more for its books and suggesting that readers might enjoy instead a book from another author. If customers for some reason persist and buy a Hachette book anyway, Amazon is saying it will take weeks to deliver it.
The scorched-earth tactics arose out of failed contract negotiations. Amazon was seeking better terms, Hachette was balking, so Amazon began cutting it off.
According to our order history, the book was scheduled for delivery on May 1. They’re still in transit. I can’t recall an Amazon.com order ever taking this long.
I’m sorry, but who made Jeff Bezos filthy rich? Writers and readers — the same people he’s treating like crap with this garbage, that’s who. What kind of retailer treats customers that way? What kind of retailer treats his suppliers that way? We bought that book via Amazon Prime, which we pay extra for, and which guarantees delivery in 3-5 business days. Does this dirty trick put Amazon in breach of contract? I hope so. Class action suit, anybody? Federal Trade Commission, is this something for you?
Anyway, forget Amazon. Buy from Barnes & Noble’s online shop. And if you have ordered my book (or any Hachette book) from Amazon, and an unreasonable amount of time has passed without it being delivered, please file a complaint. Frankly, I hope you will complain if you’re an Amazon customer who has never bought a Hachette book. It is damned outrageous that they would treat customers this way.