Booksellers and Values-Driven Business
In today’s issue of Shelf-Awareness, Hachette’s CEO Michael Pietsch was quoted as offering thanks to booksellers for their support during their difficulties with Amazon.
While some may say that indie booksellers had good reason to support Hachette since Amazon has taken every opportunity to drive out bricks-and-mortar bookstores by selling popular books below their cost and significantly discounting for years, the motivation is actually much more basic: this kind of bullying behavior has been foreign to the book business … until Amazon gained substantial power.
Independent booksellers have weathered much during the last three decades: the growth of big box stores, Amazon’s relentless discounting to drive out competition, an economic crisis, the acceptance of e-reading devices and the growth of various platforms for electronic reading. Indies are a tenacious and values-driven group. They are still alive and speaking up for what is right and fair and good for society.
For many of us in business for ourselves, it’s the only way we know how to participate in a collective effort that centers on literacy, lifelong learning, and living an honorable life.