However Billingham received applause from the audience when he responded by saying books were devalued if they were sold for “less than half the price of a cup of tea”.
The devaluation of the book is something that's been happening for years and years, and before Amazon even invented the Kindle, Waterstones were doing this in order to lure readers away from the small bookstores who couldn't afford to discount titles so heavily. And what are stores like The Works doing if not training consumers to pay less for books?
Yes the book is being devalued.
Yes it is wrong.
But it is not only down to self publishing, and is a trend that's gone on ever since the UK NET agreement was done away with.The thing that self publishing has done is empower writers like never before and it is changing the industry. The old publishing model had been around for a long time now and maybe change is inevitable.