If you self-publish e-books, or POD paper books, you need to read this article. In a time when the book industry is in serious flux, why would a major book retailer react in the manner Border/Kobo is doing? Amazon is the 900 lb. gorilla in the book world and Amazon makes self-publishing viable for the independent author to reach an audience and sell books. Barnes & Noble got off to a bad start but has improved and is working to make things easier for self-publishing authors. About 10-15% of my monthly sales are now on Barnes & Noble. It's not Amazon, but 10-15% is nothing to ignore either.
I don't see paper books vanishing in the immediate future, but POD technology and the business model it offers is quickly eliminating the middleman in the publishing world and I am not to sure I feel bad about it. Why should someone else take a slice of the pie just by standing in the way between the retailer and me?
The responses posted to the article are interesting as well and worth reading. The publishing industry is changing in ways authors could not have foreseen even a year or two ago.