Town Center retailer Island Books is being accused by a Seattle-based online bookseller of employing aggressive and unfair sales practices to maintain its strangehold on the purchasing habits of local readers and gift givers.
The online entity, known as Amazon.com, claims that its attempts to break into the lucrative Mercer Island market are being thwarted by what it describes as “underhanded tactics” by Island Books.
“They have actual human beings making in-person recommendations on what books to purchase,” groused Amazon.com spokesperson Ray Pacious, referring to Island Books. “How are we supposed to compete with that?”
Pacious also noted that while Amazon.com requires its customers to purchase a $99 annual subscription to get free shipping on its books, Island Books offers this for free, adding, “As long as Island Books continues to try to shut us out of the Mercer Island market with their anti-competitive tactics, we’ll continue to fight back.”
Asked to comment, a spokesperson for Island Books said, “We don’t have time to concern ourselves with a fake bookstore.”