Random House comments on Amazon Pricing
The American Booksellers Associationís Winter Institute meeting was held today, and for the most part it wasn't good news for Amazon. When the representative from Macmillan stood up he received a standing ovation from the crowd (mostly independent booksellers). David Young, chief executive of Hachette USA, also spoke and said he "saw only a bleak future at $9.99". He also indicated that Hatchette would be adopting the agency model.
The only bright spot for Amazon, and Kindle owners, came from Madeline McIntosh, the President of Sales, Operations, and Digital for Random House. She pointed out that publishers "have no real experience at setting retail prices." She also revelaed that one of the reasons Random House had not been party to the iBook Store at launch was because of the pricing issues.
In regards to delayed releasing of ebooks, McIntosh said, "Our current policy is we release e-books at the same time as physical books," followed by "I haven't been convinced that it's good for the author or consumer to delay the release. My fear is that the consumer who has fully embraced the technology will buy another e-book that is available or lose interest altogether. What if I train the consumer that the best scenario is to get it free?"