It was less than two weeks ago Amazon had to back down on its decision to shut out numerous countries from subsidiary Abe Books in the face of protests from retailers and consumers impacted by the decision.
Now Amazon has u-turned on is July decision to block Australian shoppers from the Amazon US site.
Amazon suspended shipping to Australian addresses from its international website in July 2018 to comply with Australia’s GST laws, but upset huge numbers of Australian shoppers who found they could no longer buy the products they had previously had access to.
Amazon said in a statement,
Since that time, our teams have continued to focus their efforts on building the complex infrastructure needed to enable exports of low-value goods to Australia and remain compliant with GST laws.
We will continue to work constructively with the government on the implementation and enforcement of its legislation to ensure it achieves its objective of a level playing field for all retailers and marketplaces.
A level playing field? For books that concept went out of the window when Amazon started its own publishing imprints and started offering Amazons Ads.
Nowadays Amazon is a pay-to-play selling environment, and nowhere more so than in the books sector where authors and publishers compete with each other to pay the most for visibility and compete with Amazon’s imprints for brand recognition.
But for Australian consumers it looks like a good deal.
And it is consumers, not content suppliers, that determine the tune the Amazon piper will play.
As an Australian publisher, as well as consumer, I am very happy with this. The big aspect for authors is that we will now be able to order proof and author copies of paperbacks published therough KDP Print – which we have not been able to do, since July.