You know, this is a terribly defeatist attitude. I see no reason why smart and driven action by publishers can’t bring about change, though along vertical niches rather than broad trade lines:
In short, I don’t think publishers will figure all this out in time, which is why retailers will dominate the customer relationships in the future. They can amass enough of a consumer base that they can market a book to hundreds of millions of consumers and, more importantly, get enough of those consumers to buy the book. With those 100 million billing and messaging relationships, Apple and Amazon would only need to achieve a reasonable 1 percent conversion rate to help an author sell 1 million books, a level few authors today reach.
via Why Online Retailers Will Squeeze Out Publishers In The Book Business | paidContent.