American Booksellers Association
The American Booksellers Association (ABA) is a non-profit industry association founded in 1900 that promotes independent bookstores in the United States and Canada. The ABA and its members support freedom of speech through the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, literacy, and programs that encourage reading. Many independent booksellers are concerned about the potential negative impact on free speech by giant megachains and nationwide web retailers. The concern is that publishers cater to these retailers and that control over what books, and hence what ideas, are available will ultimately rest in the hands of these few companies.
The ABA has been shrinking from a peak in 1991 when there were 5200 members. There were 5500 members with 7000 stores in 1995; 3300 members in 1998; 3100 members with 4000 stores in 2000; 2794 members in 2001; 2191 members in 2002; and 1702 members in 2005. In 2010 the number of members increased for the first time in almost two decades, with 1410 members, up nine from the previous year.
The ABA sponsored the Book Sense marketing program and associated BookSense.com web site, intended to preserve a connection between consumers and local independent bookstores. In June 2008, Book Sense was replaced by IndieBound, a new program and website. After a period of beta testing, a social network-style community feature was launched on the website on September 11, 2008.
- Dugan, I. Jeanne (1998-06-29), "The Baron of Books", Business Week
- Singer, Penny (1999-01-17), "Independent Bookstores Harvest Their Zeal", New York Times
- Kawaguchi, Karen (2000-07-24), "Feminist Feast And Famine", Publishers Weekly
- Mutter, John (2002-05-05), "BEA Show Daily: ABA Loses Members, Money", Publishers Weekly[dead link]
- Spearie, Steven (2008-08-14), "A novel approach to selling books", Norwich Bulletin
- Hillel Italie, "Independent Bookstores Get A Boost: American Booksellers Association Membership Up Since Last Year," Huffington Post, May 21, 2010.
- "A Plethora of New Independent Bookstores Open in 2006" (Press release). American Booksllers Association. 2007-01-08. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "115 New Independent Bookstores Open in 2007" (Press release). American Booksllers Association. 2008-01-14. Retrieved 2008-11-24.
- "BookSense.com Becomes ABA E-commerce Solution" (Press release). American Booksellers Association. 2008-06-04. Retrieved 2008-10-02.
- "New IndieBound Community Launches" (Press release). American Booksellers Association. 2008-09-11. Retrieved 2008-10-02.