Amazon’s contract battle with Hachette has been getting lots of attention, with the Seattle company delaying book shipments and declining to take pre-orders for popular Hachette titles amid negotiations with the publisher.
But it turns out that’s not the only standoff affecting the retailer’s catalog.
Upcoming DVDs and Blu-ray versions of Warner Home Video movies — including “The Lego Movie” and “300: Rise of an Empire” — are unavailable for pre-order on Amazon’s site. The New York Times reports today that the situation began in mid-May, as a result of contract negotiations between Amazon and Time Warner.
The movies are available for pre-order online from other major retailers, including Target and Best Buy.
Customers on Amazon’s forums have been calling the company out over the issue. One writes, “This has got to be the most eagerly awaited 2014 movie being released so far – kids movie, adults like it too, the first good 2014 film… oh well, Amazon may be digging their own grave if they keep this up. I don’t really care whose “fault” it is, other sites don’t seem to have this problem. It is eerily reminiscent of the pressure Wal-Mart puts on suppliers… not a good pattern.”
In fact, Amazon has defended itself in the Hachette dispute by saying its actions are part of the ordinary course of business for any retailer, as it negotiates with suppliers.
For the record, the Lego Movie is available to buy and watch on demand via Amazon Instant Video.