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.CEO of the ABA Oren Teicher sent out a letter to ABA members this morning notifying them of the turn of events. “To say the least, we are very disappointed in Google’s decision,” wrote Teicher, “but we have every confidence that long before Google’s reseller program is discontinued, ABA will be able to offer IndieCommerce users a new alternative e-book product, or choice of products.” During the transition, Google eBooks will continue to be available on bookseller Web sites.
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Btw, don’t forget that Google ended their relationship with newspaper publishers when they stopped their newspaper digitization project about a year ago. It also came without much notice.
Our point here is that Google loves you one day and doesn’t need you the next. That’s often how business works. This is yet another reminder and real world illustration that Google is a business not unlike any other. Thinking that they might be something different is wrong.
See Also: (Sub Only): Google Cancels eBooks Reseller Program, Dropping Indies (via Publishers Lunch)