Saturday, November 8, 2014

Book Blogger Hop November 7th - November 13th: During World War II, "77" Was Used as a Password at the Swedish-Norwegian Border

Book Blogger Hop

Jen at Crazy for Books restarted her weekly Book Blogger Hop to help book bloggers connect with one another, but then couldn't continue, so she handed the hosting responsibilities off to Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer. The only requirements to participate in the Hop are to write and link a post answering the weekly question and then visit other blogs that are also participating to see if you like their blog and would like to follow them.

This week Billy asks: Should book bloggers be doing more to support bookshops rather than just give links to Amazon or Banes & Noble as a place to buy the printed version of books they read?

Yes. While Amazon and Barnes & Noble provide a valuable service such as being generally good places to find things in the long tail of the internet, the influence these kinds of large retailers hold over the products that are available to purchase is somewhat problematic. When the makers of music, movies, television, and books bend their offerings to satisfy the parameters set by large retailers, then the diversity and dynamism of art is curtailed. A healthy market has many venues to obtain products, and supporting local businesses like bookshops helps to keep the larger chain retailers honest.

Also, local bookstores are, by and large, run and staffed by people who actually love books. They know which books are worth recommending, they know how to figure out what book you are looking for from a vague description of the cover, they can offer a level of personalized service that online or big box retailers can only approximate via database algorithms, and those can never truly understand artistic endeavors, and will never be able to replace human effort. While there are many people who are too far away from a bookshop to be able to patronize one, and as a result, Amazon is their only viable option, for people who do live in proximity to a local book store, you are only cheating yourself if you eschew patronizing them in favor of an internet retailer.

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