Jan 15 2009
"Overdrive, Mobipocket Paris, and Ingram Digital have all told us Hachette is pulling them from the feeds," Bob told me in a 4:13 a.m. update. "All the resellers may not have completed all catalog updates yet. I know that we’re auditing our updates-to make sure all Hachette is gone-’at least until they re-authorize the U.S. channel. This has all happened very fast and there are many moving parts to make this happen in a way that doesn’t undermine the end customer, while at the same time honoring the intent of Hachette’s action. All three distributors are working on this in partnership with Hachette. Hope this helps clarify. -No bad guys-’just a tough situation and a little tough love from Hachette, perhaps."
Apparently there have been some geographical rights violations or something. When an author sells his or her rights, they can do so by territorial regions such as just US rights, and then they can sell other rights (such as Spain, Germany, Japan, UK, etc) for additional money. Some publishers, like Harlequin, buy worldwide rights.
It sounds like these fulfillment companies like Overdrive, et al., have been making books available that shouldn’t be made available to US customers and so Hachette is pulling ALL the books which doesn’t make sense. Surely books by Julia Harper, Michelle Rowen, and the like, have sold their rights in the US and therefore to pull those books would really punish the reader more so than anyone.
Additionally, I don’t know if this means that past titles like Twilight by Stephenie Meyer and her books will be affected. This situation absolutely sucks and I hope it can be worked out because it is really a set back for ebook reading everytime something like this transpires. I’ll keep you posted about what I hear.