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Will Amazon Book Giveaway Help or Harm Booksellers?

Amazon
Will Amazon Book Giveaway Help or Harm Booksellers?

Amazon is giving away some translated foreign-language ebooks “in hopes of showing more readers the joys of translated text,” explaining its reasoning as follows: “The translation of literature plays a vital role in global entertainment, but it’s also essential in education – bringing new cultures, traditions, mindsets, and perspectives to readers.”

It’s making available the English-language translation of nine award-winning foreign-language books, which customers can download at Amazon.com/readtheworld through April 24.

Learning that a retailer is giving away free products can give rivals cause for concern. In this case, will the move harm booksellers? Or will it result in a greater hunger to read – and own – more books?

Excerpt of Amazon blog post follows:

Do you love Like Water for Chocolate? Maybe you’re a fan of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Or perhaps you can’t get enough of The Neverending Story, Slumdog Millionaire, or The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

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What these movies (and hundreds more) have in common is that each began its journey to the screen as a novel in one language that was then translated into English, gaining a new readership and potentially millions of viewers.

The translation of literature plays a vital role in global entertainment, but it’s also essential in education – bringing new cultures, traditions, mindsets, and perspectives to readers. Through storytelling, minds are expanded and compassion is strengthened.

Most readers are familiar with Amazon’s book business, and some might know about Amazon’s publishing business. But Amazon also has a significant translation imprint known as Amazon Crossing. In celebration of World Book Day 2019, Amazon Crossing will give away copies of nine books that have been translated into English, in hopes of showing more readers the joys of translated text. Customers can download the English-language translation of award-winning foreign-language books curated by Amazon Crossing editors starting today and concluding at 11:59pm PDT on April 24 by visiting amazon.com/readtheworld.

SOURCE: Amazon Corporate Blog Post

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.