As I write in The Age of the Platform, Amazon takes a great deal of flak these days for a wide variety of reasons. Many think that it's a de facto monopoly. Independent book store owners are rife with contempt for the Seattle-based giant. For their part, investors wonder why CEO and founder Jeff Bezos seems allergic to a little thing called profits.
Say what you will about the company but many authors find it increasingly empowering. Case in point: Jessica Park. She had published five books with traditional publishers and felt depressed when they wouldn't pick up Flat-Out Love. She did it herself via Amazon and you can read her incredibly inspirational tale here. (You can read the letter on the front page of Amazon.com below)
I've said it before and I'll say it again: Today's powerful platforms disintermediate established powers-that-be. In the case of Amazon, count bookstores and traditional publishers among the many with axes to grind. And Amazon is continuing the disruption in the publishing arena, signing big-name authors like Tim Ferris to book deals.
Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google (the Gang of Four) each has many detractors. However, I'd bet that they're probably many more advocates. Regardless of your stance, when you read a story like Jessica Park's, how can you not be moved?