It never ceases to amaze me why on earth there is such a rash of non-news being reported and why our elected officials are wasting time on issues that don't affect the vast majority of the country.
The obvious non issue of late was the threat of homosexuals getting married thus causing homophobes in politics to worry about box turtle marriage as the tragic result of not doing something about denying gay folks their civil rights. It was also noted by Senator Santorum that nothing is more important than banning gays from marrying in the world today. The logic escaped me, but you must remember that I'm blonde. Would the Defending Marriage Amendment have prevented homosexuals from giving birth to more homosexuals? The last time I checked, you need stuff from both sexes to reproduce, but maybe I missed some new breakthrough in science.
Heterosexuals are really to blame for the gay 'problem', the way I look at it. Perhaps the government should be finding out who these deviant parents are who give birth to homosexuals and stop them at once. Oops, that would point right at our veep and his wife.
Today while perusing the The New York Times , that bastion of liberalism, I read that used books are deemed a threat to book publishers by one writer, yet none of the book publishers can pinpoint what the problem is or if it has an adverse effect on book sales. WTF?
The article starts off like this: "Is Amazon.com becoming the Napster of the book business?"
Here is the 'terrible' problem: "But the Web, particularly sites like Amazon and eBay , have given millions of consumers an easy way to find cheap books - often for under $1 - without paying royalty fees to publishers or authors."
Oh my gawd. How shocking. What about libraries, garage sales, used book stores, giving books to your neighbors/friends? Why throw a perfectly good book in the garbage when you're done with it? If a good book is out of publication, we should just chuck it?
The author goes on a fact finding mission:
"Mass-market publishers are not certain the used-book phenomenon is a problem worth addressing, but others in the industry have already made up their minds."
"We think it's not good for the industry and it has an effect, but we can't measure it," said Paul Aiken, executive director of the Authors Guild
"And Kathryn Blough, the vice president for the Association of American Publishers, said that she "wouldn't jump to the conclusion that used books are eating away at the new-book market." "
"We've not been able to pinpoint a definite effect, but my gut is that absolutely there's an effect," said Dominique Raccah, chief executive of Sourcebooks Inc. "
"We see this as a virtuous cycle. The lower prices of used books allow people to experiment with authors and genres in ways they might not have otherwise. ...We definitely see people who buy at a lower price point come back and buy new books in that same genre," Mr. Greeley from Amazon.com added. "
This is my favorite part:
Ms. Shanley, whose company reported on used books this month in its newsletter, Publishing Trends, said that publishers were beginning to see the effects. "We've asked publishers how much of an issue it is, and the responses are either 'I have so many other problems to deal with,' or 'Yes, it's an issue, but as there are no easy fixes, I can't really focus on it,' '' she said.
Where exactly is the problem? Who is worried about it besides the author? Why is this article in the NY Times wasting space? Why am I writing about it? What about gay used book dealers? Where will this end?