Author Charlie Stross explains the business reasons why Amazon pulled all Macmillan books from their online store last week. It’s the best overview of the dispute and why readers should care about it that I’ve seen.
Also check out this post by Jim Henley, in which he links to a bunch of reactions and runs some of the numbers in the dispute, and explains in concise terms exactly what’s at stake:
There are $7-8 in incremental costs coming off of every hardcover book as we move from print to bits, with some small new incremental costs for ebook production. So call it $7 a book.
One way or another, that $7 is going to be split among authors, publishers, retailers and customers. The question is, who gets how much?
Update: Macmillan wins, for now.