Amazon faces anti p.o.d. surge

<p>Amazon.com is continuing to face a barrage of criticism from a range of publishing and author bodies over its decision to push print on demand publishers to use its p.o.d. printer BookSurge.<br /><br />Earlier in the week, the US Authors Guild said it was looking at the move for &quot;antitrust and other legal implications&quot;. The Guild has now been joined by the American Society of Journalists and Authors, the US trade association for freelance non-fiction writers, who said it was &quot;disgusted&quot;, adding that it would urge the Washington state attorney general&#39;s office to investigate whether Amazon&#39;s move constituted restraint of trade or otherwise violated anti-trust laws.</p><p>ASJA president Russell Wild said: &quot;With these grabby, strong-arm tactics, Amazon negates all that and the years of goodwill it has built up with writers, who ultimately will bear the brunt of any price increases in the printing of independently published books.&quot;<br /><br />The Small Publishers Association of North America, which said it represented more than 1,000 book publishers and authors, has also issued a public notice. It stated that its members had expressed their concerns about the quality of the books produced by BookSurge. &quot;Bad publicity doesn&#39;t disappear as fast as it used to,&quot; it warned.<br /><br />The Publishers Marketing Association, which claimed to represent more than 4,000 independent publishers, also urged Amazon to reconsider its position. &quot;Without the opportunity to benefit from competitive pricing, small publishers risk at best an expensive and needless overhaul of their manufacturing process, and at worst, the loss of their livelihood.&quot;<br /><br />In the UK, YouWriteOn.com, the Arts Council initiative for new writers, has called for a boycott of Amazon. It has invited all p.o.d. authors to list books on its site with a free link to any bookseller apart from Amazon.</p><p>Amazon, which put up a public notice last week explaining its decision, has not yet responded to the new attacks. </p>