aprilhenry (aprilhenry) wrote,

Do you think we can stop people from buying used books?

The Internet has changed everything. It used to be that if you liked to collect, say Girl Scout uniforms from the 1960s, you could haunt thrift stores in every town you passed through, and maybe every year or two, you would have the thrill of finding something.

Now you can go on ebay and find pretty much anything you want with the few clicks of a mouse.

It used to be that only a few stores were dedicated to selling used paperbacks, and the only place you found used hardcovers was at garage sales.

Now you can go to Amazon or half.com and pick up pretty much any book you want at half the cover price or less. And people are always going to be drawn to the idea of a bargain.

Mystery author John Morgan Wilson writes, “Massive Internet used book sales are literally killing the careers of countless writers. We get no royalties or credit for these used books sales, and our publishers make no money from them. As soon as our hardcovers or paperbacks hit the market, the Internet booksellers start buying them up used and selling them very cheaply, and resell them over and over. Why should someone buy a new book when they can purchase a used hardcover for a fraction of the price? Used book sales, which reportedly now account for about 12 percent of the entire market, have eaten so deeply into our paperback sales that many of us no longer have our books published in paperback, myself included.”

I would like link to the rest, but I can’t find it online.

I think this is a noble, and lost, cause. At times, I buy used books. At times, I also buy new books. I sometimes shop at Amazon, although I just bought all my Christmas present books at Annie Blooms Books, where I had to pay full price. But I like Annie Blooms and want it to survive. I’m not so sure if I stopped buying used books that authors would thrive.

What do you think? Do you think pleas like this will change people’s buying habits?

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