The American Booksellers Association has launched an advertising campaign titled ‘Boxed Out’ against Amazon to alert the public to what it calls the growing danger that book stores are under from the online goliath during the coronavirus pandemic. The campaign, the first of its kind, was sparked by Amazon’s “Prime Day” on Tuesday and Wednesday, during which Amazon offers bargains on products.
Since the pandemic began, 35 book stores belonging to the ABA have had to shut their doors for good. They further added that some 20 percent of independent bookstores are under threat of closure. “When these independent bookstores close COVID will be listed as the cause of death, but the pre-existing condition for many may be listed as Amazon,” the association said in a statement. Dubbed “Boxed Out,” the campaign plays on the delivery boxes that have become the hallmark of Amazon home deliveries.
The ABA campaign was launched on social media but also in bookshops themselves, of which 1,750 are ABA members. Some, like Solid State Books, in Washington, have covered their front windows with giant brown cardboard, reminiscent of the Amazon delivery boxes. “Buy books from people who want to sell books, not colonise the Moon,” said the logo on the cardboard.