Monday, 7 December 2015

Pro-PI lobby, naysayers and economic rationalists come out to play ... right on cue

Right on cue, the naysayers begin their insults ... 'greedy authors and publishers who just want to make more money'; and who 'don't care about making books cheaper for Australians to buy' etc etc. And as they did in the last anti-PI campaign, economic rationalists and conservative naysayers rarely look beyond easy slogans. 
Do they honestly think authors can feel wealthy on 3% - 10% (i.e. if you have a great publisher) royalties? Snort.

They don't appear to understand, or even care what will be lost intellectually, culturally, economically at all level and genres of Australian books ... and far worse in the case of children's and YA books.

We all buy books online nowadays, we can always access cheaper books if we want - so the pro-Parallel Import crowd's argument is non-existent. Of course, being supporters of Independent bookstores we should all still be buying some books across the counter as well.

The problems of allowing PIs goes deeper than what the pro-lobby say. They don't acknowledge the threat to the publishing industry as a whole - like competition from cheaper, inferior books the big booksellers push in their stores, in supermarkets and chain stores = less money for publishers = less books being published in Australia by Australian writers and illustrators = less money to take on new writers and support their midlist authors (tell me about that one! No, you don't need to). 

The  biggest concern for many of us who are children's books creators is how Parallel Imports will impact upon Australian children’s books in far more insidious ways. Caught up in this are children's books publishers and Independent Bookshops who have been so supportive of and enthusiastic about books for young people. (Like here in Brisbane ... the brilliant Riverbend Books, Avid Reader, Where the Wild Things Are, The Mad Hatters Bookshop and more.)
Concerned Australians won this same battle against lifting the Restrictions in 2009, but we did not win the war. The Federal Government is pushing for opening up Parallel Imports again in 2016.

The only way left open to us is to use People Power - that means authors of all genres, illustrators, parents, grandparents, teachers, young readers, librarians, editors, publishers, agents, writers of text books ...yes, anyone who cares about literacy, literature and our unique Australian books.

Will YOU add your voice to the protests this time around? 
Will you sign a petition (once it's organised) and write a concerned letter to your Federal House of Reps MP and to the Senate? 

10 excellent bookshops in Brisbane if you want to explore the alternative to Big W, Target, Kmart, Myers.

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