Recently and even more so during Amazon’s Prime Day I see a lot of comments on Twitter regarding buying from Amazon and a lot of the comments can be quite lacking in thoughtfulness. So I thought I would write a quick post on why Amazon is both a blessing and a curse in the book world.
Amazon – A Curse?
It’s all too easy to see why Amazon is a curse on the book community. They have a huge market share on the book supply chain and do we really want to hand over our hard earn money to an already thriving conglomerate. Surely our money is better off in the hands of our beloved local independent bookshops or the smaller publishers and let’s not forget the ever growing number of self published authors out there.
Amazon is as close to having a monopoly on a given industry as any company in human history. Just ask around and you will soon see that most of not everyone has an account with Amazon and a huge number of them will have a Prime account. I know I do and it is incredibly convenient to have one.
Now, Amazon is in a position due to there size that they can supply products at huge discounts to their customers that an independent bookshop just cannot compete with without losing money. They cannot afford to price match Amazon and the prices of products is what attracts customers and price is also why Amazon is a blessing.
Amazon- A Blessing?
Starting off where we left the last section is price. Amazon can offer books at a lower price compared to other bookshops and that is fantastic for customers. You can either buy a book for cheaper or buy more books. It’s a win for the customer. Let’s not forget about the super convenient next day delivery for Prime customers. We no longer have to wait several working days for our book to arrive. We can get it the very next day. What’s not to like?
Not only is Amazon a blessing for customers but it also does wonders for authors and publishers. The main blessing is that it opens up their book to a much, much, much larger audience. A bigger audience normally equates to a bigger number of sales.
But with this comes the fact that we are throwing are money at a company that really doesn’t need it compared to the indie bookshops, small publishers and self pub authors.
Hate Crowd on Twitter
The past few days I have seen an increase in the amount of tweets which are aimed at people that buy books from Amazon and it is not cool at all.
For a lot of people money is a big factor when deciding where to buy books from and again Amazon pretty much wins every time. Not everyone is fortunate enough to not worry about the cost of books. For some the several £ they save buying from Amazon can mean a big difference. Yes, ideally everyone would buy from and help support the indies and self published authors however this decision is often made for us and is it not the love of reading that matters the most.
The way I see it is that as long as you can get your hands on a book then that’s fantastic. It’s a win for the book community.
Not only is price a major factor in this predicament but also the accessibility of books. Amazon can offer delivery to even the hardest to reach of places and not everyone is able to get to a local indie bookshop. Why should people be penalised for not having the same accessibility to books as others that can easily get to a indie bookshop?
Stop for a second and just think about others circumstances before you tweet why people buying books from Amazon are the worst.
We all love books
Let’s just remember that we all have the same interest and we all want to do what’s best to support authors, publishers and bookshops and we all go about this in different ways.
So let’s stop with the hating when someone buys from Amazon and let’s celebrate the fact that another book will make a happy home on a much loved bookshelf somewhere in the world.
We are the book community and we love books!
Let me know your thoughts on this issue by commenting below and please remember we all have a love for books.