Monday, June 24, 2019

Amazon counterfeits can indeed get in the way

Since Amazon dominates the online bookstore market, counterfeit books (and other goods) seem to have become a problem, as reported on the front page of the New York Times today by David Streitfeld, link.
He starts the article with a discussion of “The Sanford Guide for Antimicrobial Therapy” from a small publisher in Sperryville VA, along US 29-211, on the way to the entrance to Shenandoah National Park and many hikes in my young adulthood. Apparently the book has become the target of counterfeits.  So do many others, especially textbooks.

I had never thought about counterfeit books.  I don’t think it would be a problem with POD. But my first “Do Ask Do Tell” book had a print run in 1997, as did “Our Fundamental Rights”.  I have sometimes seen “collector’s” copies of these show up from third party retailers and I feel flattered. And sometimes the books (or my online notes) have been plagiarized.

There could be a problem of books with gross misinformation (like anti-vax, maybe).  Amazon has pulled books advocating pedophilia after an AC360 report. The book “Hit Man” from Paladin Press led to a lawsuit against the press as an “assassination manual” and the copies were allowed to sell out;  the book does not seem to appear on Amazon now. Paladin Press went out of business in 2017 (Denver Post). 
This would not be as big a problem in traditional book distribution, as to major and independent stores.

I visited the Sperryville property today.  It appears to be a business that gives therapy treatments and the book is incidental.  There was no bookstore open when I visited it.

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