theodp writes: "An Actual Internet Success Story explains how, in just a few years, the Internet has transformed the world into a huge marketplace for used books, utterly transforming a business that had gone pretty much unobserved for centuries. The Net has changed how we buy and think about books - someone in Illinois can easily buy a cheap used hardback over the Net from a New York dealer, read it and then resell it to someone in California, having spent, in effect, only a few dollars. According to the story, the increase in the number of used books sold is staggering, maybe 100 times what it was in 1995, and now accounts for more than 15 percent of Amazon's sales. Tales are told of used book dealers lining up nine hours before a library sale to get 'free money,' cutting deals with thrift-store managers and library-sale organizers to avoid 'feeding frenzy' fights, volunteering at the Salvation Army to get first dibs on donations, and offering review copies for half price on the Net weeks before a book is even published."
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