George Packer: Is Amazon Bad for Books? : The New Yorker.

This is a well-reasoned argument for why Amazon may not be good for books. I don’t believe quality books will disappear. You may even say the quality of books may improve since you have so many imprints willing to publish literature of dubious character. No doubt the industry is changing, and authors have a tough road ahead. But with the power of gatekeepers waning more aspiring authors will have the opportunity to publish. I just hope the part of the industry that’s important doesn’t go away, editors and author support. It would be wonderful if Amazon would step up and provide this kin of support, but it’s not really a content company (true even in light of it’s desire to produce/publish content). I feel the best hope for the industry is for it to deconstruct, for author support I move out of the publishing houses. It seems unlikely, nobody wants to be the utility/”dumb pipe” in the production chain.

You almost have to feel bad for publishers. Small ones, anyway.

Between this article and the one on warehouse workers I’m starting to feel guilty for using Amazon for so many purchases.