Seagull/Deseret Book Postpone Deadline

News articles and blog posts elsewhere indicate that Deseret Book and Seagull Book and Tape have agreed to continue negotiations, and Deseret Book has postponed its deadline to August 31st.

Hopefully, this gives the two companies time to resolve their difference, whatever it is exactly, and keep the LDS Book industry from the consequences of what is, in my opinion, an ill-considered move.

If they do reach an agreement that allows Seagull to continue to purchase Deseret Book’s publications, I will be interested to see the effects.

Here and elsewhere, commenters have suggested two possible motivations for Deseret Books’ move: first, that Deseret Book wants Seagull to reduce its discounting of Deseret Book products; and second, that Deseret Book wants Seagull, as its statements have indicated, to better merchandise and promote its books.

We might know which of these is true by Seagull’s actions following the end of August (barring another postponement or a breakdown in negotiations). If Seagull puts more effort into merchandising and promotion, then that may have been the issue. On the other hand, if Seagull reduces the discounts it gives to customers on Deseret Book titles, that may have been the real issue.

I probably shouldn’t take that too far. We still may not know for sure. I currently lean toward the idea that discount is the real issue, but Seagull increasing its merchandising of Deseret Book titles doesn’t necessarily mean I’m wrong.

Regardless of the real reason behind Deseret Book’s actions, or even who is at ‘fault,’ it is good news that they have agreed to postpone the date that Deseret Book will stop shipments.

It will be even better news should the two companies find a way to resolve this dispute. The sooner the better.

5 thoughts on “Seagull/Deseret Book Postpone Deadline”

  1. This is a relief.
    I’m so pleased that there is still hope for this issue yet, it shows that Deseret Book isn’t as unreasonable as they seemed there for a moment.

  2. I think Deseret Book champions mediocrity in fiction and allows general authorities to take advantage of members who think they have to buy every book written by a GA. It bothers me immensely when I see another book by a general authority, just published talks. And I know people who think they are more spiritual and righteous because they have all these books.

    And they wouldn’t know Les Miserables if it bit them in the butt.

  3. I actually see no problems with General Authority books. It fills a need with a lot of members. The story goes with “The Miracle of Forgiveness” that Pres. Kimball gave all the profits of the book back to the Church (I don’t know if that’s Mormon folklore or not). But even if he didn’t, I still don’t have any big issues. I don’t think the General Authorities are trying to manipulate people. They are trying to be prophets, though, in the sense that they want to spread their words and experiences with the Divine to the widest broadest audience. Publishing is effective in that.

  4. I don’t think they’re trying to manipulate people, I think they’re unconsciously taking advantage. I’m not talking about Neal A. Maxwell, but it seems like everybody has to write a book who is in authority and a lot of their books are not good books.

    Vaughn Featherstone, for instance, used to write wonderful books, but he’s give out. He’s marketing his name.

    I have a neighbor down the street who prided himself on buying every book written by a GA. He could not afford it, but he thought it was the righteous thing to do. That’s just stupid.

    I buy them after I read them, if I feel they are worth my money. Well, I get them at the library. And more and more, lately, they are not worth the money.

    I realize they are giving their all to the Lord, and many are not rich, ie John Groberg. But his books have been worth reading. Others are not.

    I just feel that it’s taking advantage. Unless it’s my personal heroes, which makes me a complete hypocrite and forget I said anything. I guess everybody is a hero to someone. I just talked myself out of my own position.

  5. Frankly, DB comes off as a whiney and immature in this whole thing.

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