As of 29 September, O’Reilly will no longer be able to use email to deliver the ebooks it sells you to your Kindle account. To cushion the blow (and possibly also as an act of protest), O’Reilly is holding a 50% off all ebooks sale today. It’s good for all titles, and is only good for 28 September.
O’Reilly confirmed the news on its support pages, telling customers that:
Amazon is discontinuing the Send to Kindle feature we offer on oreilly.com at the end of September. Regrettably, they have not made an alternative process available that we can provide to you through oreilly.com. If you valued this feature you can contact Amazon and request that they either re-enable it or create an API-based solution for publishers to implement.
O’Reilly is only the latest publisher to run afoul of Amazon’s rules. Earlier this year Baen Books made a similar announcement, only to later reveal that the delivery feature wasn’t disabled so much as Amazon had imposed a cap on the number of books Baen could deliver each day.
The Pragmatic Bookshelf has also been forced to drop this feature, although they did not mention any kind of cap.
Curiously enough, Amazon is only imposing this limit on publishers, and not retailers or distributors. Smashwords, for example, can still deliver a purchased ebook via email, and so can netGalley. There are also a number of Polish retailers which offer this feature, thus making it incredibly odd that publishers are no longer allowed to support readers.
If one were sufficiently conspiracy-oriented, one would wonder if this is a negotiating tactic on the part of Amazon. Alas, there is no proof either way.
image by miniyo73