Friday, February 15, 2013

If Barnes & Noble Goes Under, What Happens To All Those Nooks?

More doom and gloom about Barnes & Noble today. It appears that Nook is going to lose more money than expected. I guess if losses had stayed flat, as was expected, the situation would have been better, if not actually good. Even though it sounds as if even then we wouldn't be talking about making money.

I was reminded of an LA Times article I read last month. The author, Michael Hiltzik, said that we ereader users don't actually own the eBooks we purchase. We are "licensees." "Nowhere does Amazon, Apple or any other distributor pledge to support its digital formats in perpetuity. Quite the contrary: They typically warn that they can cancel their service at any time, without warning, in a way that could end your access to a lifetime of e-book purchases."

He doesn't say anything about a "distributor" going out of business. So my question is, if Barnes & Noble goes belly up (to put it indelicately), what happens to Nook users?

Now you must excuse me while I leave to do a final copy edit the Saving the Planet & Stuff copy we have ready to upload to Nook.


Ms. Yingling said...

This has always been my fear. I have only bought one book for my Nook (Christopher Morley's The Haunted Bookshop, which I later found for free), and would much rather put the money into a paper version. The Nook is mainly for E ARCs, which is nice, because then I don't feel bad that the publisher has sent me a paper copy.

Gail Gauthier said...

Barnes & Noble's demise has been predicted for a while now, and yet it's still here. I wonder if the brick and mortar portion of the business went under, if it would be worthwhile for someone to buy the Nook portion and keep it running? It might, since self-published writers can sell through Nook just as they do through Kindle and other, smaller, companies.