Google Ends eBook Agreement with Indies (entire story in context)
On Tuesday representatives of Google contacted the American Booksellers Association and Powell’s Books to announce that it will end its Google eBooks reseller program worldwide. In February, it had seemed as if independent booksellers were getting a reprieve when Google reinstated some affiliate stores that had low sales. But in yet another sign of industry consolidation, Google will start selling e-books solely through its recently launched Google Play beginning January 31, 2013.
It is business. Simple as that. I have sympathies toward the indie bookstore, but they never signed on to be a charity. They signed on to do business, to make money. There is no ethical flux here. No contracts are being broken, nor business being swindled. People are employed -- 32,467 by Google (source: Wikipedia, linking to a 2011 source), and Amazon employees 56,200 (2012) (also Wikipedia). That's over 88,000 people, not counting all the affiliates and other business deriving income from one or the other.
That's not taking into acount either the completely unknown e-book author who, through either/both, takes a living from his books. Why? Because Google and Amazon have a business which works. The result is indie authors see support in ways an indie bookstore simply hasn't got the chops for.