Barnes & Noble had some fighting words for Amazon Tuesday with their announcement that the company won't sell titles from Amazon's new publishing arm in its stores. The two companies, of course, are in a bitter competition for e-reader customers and Amazon tends not to attract warm feelings from the rest of the book publishing industry. Barnes & Noble's move follows that of other smaller booksellers. Jaime Carey, Barnes & Noble's Chief Merchandising Officer, doesn't hedge in Tuesday's decision. The statement reads:
Barnes & Noble has made a decision not to stock Amazon published titles in our store showrooms. Our decision is based on Amazon’s continued push for exclusivity with publishers, agents and the authors they represent. These exclusives have prohibited us from offering certain eBooks to our customers. Their actions have undermined the industry as a whole and have prevented millions of customers from having access to content. It’s clear to us that Amazon has proven they would not be a good publishing partner to Barnes & Noble as they continue to pull content off the market for their own self interest. We don’t get many requests for Amazon titles, but If customers wish to buy Amazon titles from us, we will make them available only online at bn.com.
Down to the unsubtle dig in the last sentence, that's a pretty clear "declaration of war," as Bloomberg BusinessWeek's Brad Stone terms it. What with Barnes & Noble's very wide network of stores, this is actually a pretty significant move on their part. We expect no end to the spat.