Macmillan has in its power to say, “No, fuck YOU!” to Amazon and make it stick, and newsflash: It ain’t with the indie bookstores. This is what you do, Macmillan:
Print: Sell for just above wholesale and offer free shipping.
Electronic: Strip your DRM from your existing ebooks and feverishly convert your back catalog. Sell them at the wholesale mass market paperback price.
Marketing: Take out ads in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal announcing your bookstore and flip Amazon off publicly, and at the same time exploit the fact that Amazon has just seared your name into the minds of the reading public.
Your weapon: Your entire catalog.
Goal: Cut the Gordian knot that is the distribution system that has just bitchslapped you and turn a healthier profit.
You could conceivably break Amazon’s back if you succeed (and you WOULD), and other publishers decide to come with you.
I would give just about anything to see something so daring happen in publishing.
Here’s the catch: You’d have to start thinking of readers as your customers.
You know, the people who actually spend the money.
UPDATE: Oh. My. Goodness. Amazon caves. WTF? Yeah, that boy ain’t right.