Another Publisher Decides To Stop Low Cost Ebooks

by Greg on February 8, 2010

Hachette Book Group has joined Macmillan in fighting against the $9.99 ebook. They said that they would join the agency pricing model which would put ebooks in the $12.99 to $14.99 price range. It also seems like the other big publishers are going to be using the same pricing model in the near future. So, it looks like the days of the $9.99 best sellers are over.

A big reason for this happening now is Apple’s iPad. The $12.99 to $14.99 is the price point that Apple proposed to publishers for selling books on the iPad and it looks like that’s what they’re going with.

David Young, the CEO for Hachette, had this to say about the new pricing model:

“There are many advantages to the agency model, for our authors, retailers, consumers, and publishers. It allows Hachette to make pricing decisions that are rational and reflect the value of our authors’ works. In the long run this will enable Hachette to continue to invest in and nurture authors’ careers–from major blockbusters to new voices. Without this investment in our authors, the diversity of books available to consumers will contract, as will the diversity of retailers, and our literary culture will suffer.”

So, according to Mr. Young there are many advantages not only for authors, retailers, and publishers but also for all of us consumers. I would like to thank him for thinking of the consumers. I’m sure that the “diversity of books available to consumers” will be well worth the extra $3 to $5 per book that we’ll have to pay if we decide to actually buy the books.

I’ve been checking out the forums and comments on other blogs and the majority of the ebook consumers aren’t very happy with the news that’s coming out from these publishers lately (not too surprising).

I guess they still haven’t heard about what happened in the music industry. Instead of fighting ebooks they should embrace them and change their business models to adapt to the changes in technology. If not, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of the major publishers having some major problems in the future and some new ebook publishers rising up from their dust.

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Peg Lorenzon February 12, 2010 at 7:47 pm

It is the rare book that I really must/want to read when it first comes out. I will just wait until the prices come down. There are plenty of books below the 9.99 price point I have not read plus the freebies. I believe the author should get paid fair value for his/her work but since an ebook requires no paper, s&h fees, etc, I would think the mark up on an ebook is already better than the paperback and hardback books.

2 Greg February 11, 2010 at 8:51 pm

I’m pretty sure they’re just talking about new releases. I do agree though – it’s hard to pay so much more for an ebook if that was the case.

I’ll keep the freebies coming as soon as I hear about them. Glad you enjoy them.

I think Amazon does see this as being a bad thing. They are still trying to fight to keep the prices where they’re at but the publishers keep pushing for the higher prices.


3 Theresa February 11, 2010 at 6:11 pm

I would think that Amazon would see this as a bad thing especially if they want to bring out a Kindle 3. To me this could really hurt the sales of the Kindles in the future.

4 Ellen February 9, 2010 at 7:54 pm

Thanks for your freebie notices, I often take advantage of those offers. Please keep them coming as I don’t see myself shelling out more for an e-book than I would for a paperback!

5 Cheryl February 9, 2010 at 12:01 pm

What’s not clear to me is are they talking about across the board pricing for everything? Newly released Hardback and paperback? Because if that’s the case why would I spend $12.99/$14.99 for an eBook that I could buy in paperback for $3.99/$8.99? That’s just plain silly….

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