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Three indie bookstores file lawsuit against Amazon and Big Six publishers

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Mark Lennihan/AP

(Read caption) The Kindle is the official e-reading device produced by Amazon. Three independent bookstores allege that the method in which the bookseller sells e-books is hurting their business.

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Three independent bookstores are suing online bookseller behemoth Amazon and the publishers known as the Big Six, claiming that the group has created a monopoly in the sale of e-books.

Fiction Addiction, a store based in Greenville, S.C.; Posman Books, a New York City store which has three locations; and Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza of Albany, N.Y., filed the class action lawsuit.

The suit, which was filed in New York, takes aim at Amazon, Hachette, Penguin, Simon & Schuster, HarperCollins, Random House, and Macmillan.

The stores that filed the suit say that they represent “all independent brick-and-mortar bookstores who sell e-books."

The root of the complaint centers on digital rights management, which makes it difficult for a reader to switch an e-book from one e-reading device to another – for example, to move a book from a Kindle, the Amazon e-reader, to a Kobo, the one sold by indie bookstores.

The indie bookstores are saying that’s hurting their business.

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