Retail Politics Entangle Book on Obama

Barnes & Noble cuts order over publisher's deal with Amazon
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2008 2:00 PM CDT
"Chelsea Green Publishing has taken an unprecedented action to restrict the availability of Robert Kuttner's 'Obama's Challenge' by giving one company a two-week exclusivity period," B&N said.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Barnes and Noble says its stores will not stock Obama’s Challenge, a new book outlining a progressive economic agenda for the Democratic candidate, because the publisher cut an exclusive deal with, the Wall Street Journal reports. Amazon’s print-on-demand service will offer the title beginning Monday, while the official printing will be available everywhere Sept. 14.

B&N—which plans to stock the book online—denounced the Amazon deal, saying its initial order of 10,000 was based on “an even playing field.” Chelsea Green Publishing defended the agreement as the only way to achieve its goal of having advanced copies at the Democratic convention, and said it was meant to build buzz which would benefit all retailers when the main printing arrived.