meanwhile, the books at Borders are in limbo, because those books’ sales are taking a big hit with every Kindle sold. Each Kindle purchased represents at least 200 physical books that won’t be purchased over an individual’s lifetime. Amazon doesn’t release their Kindle sales numbers, but experts estimate that there have been at least 10 million units shipped and sold over the last two years. That’s 2 billion paperbacks and hardcovers that won’t be bought at bookstores…. and that number is growing pretty fast every day.
My favorite Barnes & Noble, above, just shut down near Lincoln Center. More of my favorite bookstores will do the same. My girlfriend says when they close down New York’s indy bookstore landmark, Strand, she’s going to go into depression. Sadly, we’ve already begun making preparations. I’ll be giving many back rubs around that time.
In this commercial, Amazon advertises that the “the book lives on.” What they don’t mention is that “the book” lives on, while “the books” consequently die. Borders Bookstore (remember those guys?) used to have a tight partnership with Amazon.com, in which Amazon ran Border’s online retail division… and then, they went separte ways, because Amazon was really a competitor in the end… but had Borders stayed on board, maybe Borders would have been the first physical retailer with the Kindle a couple years ago. Maybe Borders wouldn’t be filing for bankruptcy right now. Maybe Borders could have finally stuck it to B&N.
Thing is… we’ll never know. But, at least, we do know that the book lives on. Sort of.