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Opinion
Virginia Postrel

Amazon Is Going All Netflix on Book Publishers

A bundled pricing model for books makes a lot of sense, but it’s hard to pull off. Publishers hate it, and the contracts governing author royalties tend not to accommodate it very well.
You could fill them all for one low monthly price.
You could fill them all for one low monthly price.

Amazon has been quietly testing a Kindle subscription service offering an unlimited number of digital books for $9.99 a month, the tech site Gigaom reported yesterday. The bundled pricing model makes a lot of sense, but it's hard to pull off. Publishers hate it, and the contracts governing author royalties tend not to accommodate it very well.

But as Apple Inc.'s agreement to pay up to $450 million to settle the federal and state cases against it for fixing e-book prices joins earlier settlements by publishers, the book-pricing environment is in flux. As an author and a reader, I hope Amazon can make all-you-can-read work.