Is Barnes & Noble really pulling DC comics from their shelves?

You may have heard recently that DC Comics inked a deal with Amazon to bring 100 of its most popular graphic novel titles exclusively to Kindle Fire (it’s unclear at this point whether they will be available to other Kindle apps as well; at least one source suggest otherwise). These include books like Sandman, Watchmen, and a number of Batman titles.

Now Bleeding Cool News is reporting that Barnes & Noble is a little annoyed over this deal, considering DC’s previous reluctance to bring the titles to the Nook – so annoyed, in fact, that they sent emails to their stores telling employees to take DC titles off of the shelves. That’s right – no hard copies of Sandman at Barnes & Noble. Magically whisked away as if they’re not some of the bestselling graphic novels of all time.  At least, this is what BCN is reporting.

So far there hasn’t been any announcement to this effect, just the rumor reported through BCN (apparently passed on by B&N employees), so I’m really hoping it’s not true. If it is, then it would be a huge mistake both in terms of business sense and PR. The issue aside of whether the exclusive deal was a good move on DC’s part either, that kind of reaction would come off as extremely petulant.  And they may already have been alienating some customers this week by dropping the Blackberry platform for their e-reader.

So stayed tuned for more information… It seems far-fetched to me, but even as a rumor then some of the damage may have already been done, since Neil Gaiman tweeted about it this morning, and he has as much reach as most major news outlets.

Either way, what do you think of the DC exclusive deal with Kindle Fire? Would you be more inclined to purchase the platform if it turns out that you couldn’t read those titles on an iPad?

Image: Day 89/365 – Enter Sandman / Kevin Harber / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0


7 Responses to Is Barnes & Noble really pulling DC comics from their shelves?

  1. The whole e-reader/ nookbook thing from b&n isn’t right. I thought the books would be less expensive- was even told that by a b&n employee. Instead the books are the same price. I also believed that I would be able to buy comics- the choices are limited, mostly indie titles. I like my Pandigital Novel, I just wish all the features that had been promised were real.

    • Barnes and Noble has no control over the price of the books, the publishers do. When slinging nooks, I always tell people when books tend to be closer to what you'll find in the store, but the books in hardcover or trade paperback formats tend to be more reasonably priced than the books themselves. I suspect when the publisher gets more comfortable with the whole ebook format, they'll start lowering the prices a little or have special deals in store to get their print books sold with their ebooks.

  2. I work at a Barnes & Noble and we still have our DC books on the shelves at this point and nothing has been communicated to the lackeys (myself) about taking them down.

    • So I see! Hope I didn't seem to be doubting your story too much – it was unclear whether the information was coming second-hand or not, and I saw a lot of comments and tweets from B&N employees this morning saying they'd hear nothing of it.

      Thanks for reporting it… I'm seriously floored. I thought it was far-fetched but clearly I'm not cynical enough.

  3. I have yet to get an iPad, and there's no way any of the DC G/Ns that are being taken off their shelves can be had as an ebook to be read on iPad, Kindle or any other platform, I'm going to stick with McNally Robinson, Indigo, Chapters, and Coles…

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