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Old 04-23-2011, 01:05 PM   #1
Talon87
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Amazon's $23,698,655.93 book about flies

Source: http://www.michaeleisen.org/blog/?p=358
A few weeks ago a postdoc in my lab logged on to Amazon to buy the lab an extra copy of Peter Lawrence’s The Making of a Fly – a classic work in developmental biology that we – and most other Drosophila developmental biologists – consult regularly. The book, published in 1992, is out of print. But Amazon listed 17 copies for sale: 15 used from $35.54, and 2 new from $1,730,045.91 (+$3.99 shipping).
To read the full article, click the link above. It's a fun read.

The article talks about how Amazon.com vendors are increasingly turning to automated algorithms which they use to price their products relative to the prices their competitors are using: and what can happen when one vendor finds himself co-ensnared by another vendor's somewhat unorthodox business practices ...
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Old 04-23-2011, 01:23 PM   #2
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I would buy the used one. and if I were selling one up the price to 100 bucks.
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Old 04-23-2011, 01:48 PM   #3
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I never would have imagined a seller could put up an ad for a book they didn't have. Inconceivable.
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Old 04-23-2011, 02:03 PM   #4
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It's a reasonably common practice on the internet to sell something you don't physically own. It used to happen before the internet as well, but it has become much more common now due to the ease of transactions. Instead of owning a warehouse full of books to be sold, you post a "For Sale" and when someone buys, you buy it off someone else's warehouse and have it shipped to the customer. Essentially you saved on not having to rent space on something like storage and still collect a tiny "finder's fee" for getting the sale.
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Old 09-25-2017, 06:40 PM   #5
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IDIOT AMAZON VENDORS ARE AT IT AGAIN!

Suzumiya Haruhi Vol.4 hard cover: $83.99
Suzumiya Haruhi Vol.5 hard cover: $997.01
Suzumiya Haruhi Vol.9 hard cover: $135.15

The reality: Haruhi hardcovers in English got a limited print run, and the demand for these books exceeds supply
The stupidity: IDIOT AMAZON VENDORS WHO LAZILY USE ALGORITHMS TO AUTO-PRICE THEIR BOOKS ONE PENNY HIGHER THAN THE OTHER GUY AND CREATE A RACE TO THE TOP

I've been following this one off and on over the past year. Originally it was only Book 6 that was expensive. (All the others were selling brand new for $15 or less. Only Book 6 was out of new copies and was offering used copies for $50+.) Then three months ago I had reason to want to get a new copy of Book 5, but lo and behold Book 5 was no longer available new and they wanted $20+ for it. That's fine, I laughed. I don't need the second copy of Book 5. But let's check back in later.

Imagine my surprise then when today, on a whim, I decided to check in on the books and this is what I discovered.

According to these morons, I could sell my lightly used, barely damaged copy of Book 5 for $900+ (theirs, too, are only listed as "Good", not "Like New" or "New"!) and expect to find a buyer. Because anyone is seriously going to spend $900 just to own a hardcover copy of a book little read in the West.

Sadly, the idiocy isn't contained to Amazon. While it's as you'd expect over on eBay -- there aren't any copies of Book 5 available, really -- there is exactly ONE VENDOR who is offering. ...................... For the stupid price of $269.99 "or best offer". WITH FREE SHIPPING!
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