Of course, ebooks don’t suffer from wear and tear, but think of the resale process as more of a way to transfer your book licences. This is already in action in a way—users can currently “lend” out Kindle books, which then disappear from your device as your friend holds the copy in their digital libraries.
Amazon will get richer, but indie authors will get slaughtered by this. Unless Amazon somehow managed to send a portion of money from resales to the author, it’s going to cut down on them actually selling books. Authors never see a penny from the sale of used books, or remnants, and they can and will cannibalize sales.
Indie authors don’t need this. They generally sell far fewer copies of works than mainstream authors, and work in genres or themes that many don’t, like Christian SF or steampunk. If this goes through, it’s going to HAMMER many of the internet small presses by robbing them of sales.
I’m really worried about this. Kindle Lending didn’t really harm sales because of the limits of one book on one device at a time, and one free loan a month. It also paid authors a small sum when the book is borrowed. This…this is horrible. Ebooks were supposed to increase profitability while lowering retail prices, and if we see this happen, expect to see prices skyrocket as publishers have little choice but to get more money from their fans.
I hope I’m proven wrong, and this can be a supplement and not a hinderance to new ebook sales. But it really feels like Amazon is so greedy that as long as they can get their fees, they don’t mind if authors can’t make money on selling their books.