French Pass “Anti-Amazon” Law Ending Discounts and Free Shipping
On Wednesday, the French parliament passed a long-debated law that will end Amazon.com’s ability to offer a combined 5% discount and free shipping on books shipped to France, according to Livres Hebdo (as translated on Frenchculture.org).
France’s fixed book price law, dubbed “The Lang Law,” was passed in 1981 and allows for a maximum 5% discount under varied positions.
“The ‘Anti-Amazon Law,’ was created to prevent ecommerce sites like [the American giant] Amazon from stamping out the iconic network of independent French bookshops that currently struggle to compete,” wrote Livres Hebdo.
French Minister of Culture Aurélie Filippetti commented: “As we have just seen again, laws pertaining to the book economy always generate consensus, if not unanimity. This is a sign of our deep attachment to books in this nation, and it demonstrates the belief that France builds itself through its past and its future.”
France has some 3,500 bookshops in France, including 800 independent stores.