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Thread: Seller's advertised book conditions

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    Senior Member 1st Electroshock Session
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    Seller's advertised book conditions

    I've noticed the last couple days looking at more things being sold online, mostly in the Amazon marketplace, of people grossly misstating book conditions. I have seen them advertised as being in new condition, but then in the description they mention it is a former library copy, which means it'll have library markings, making the condition go down quite a bit (for me at least, wouldn't consider any library book being better than VG because of the normal markings, but maybe I am too picky). Last night I saw a book described as being in brand new condition and then having a publisher's overstock mark, which seems like that would lower the condition slightly

    Any thoughts? Personally it tends to make me trust those sellers less, though at least they mention the condition issues in their description

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    Moderator Involuntarily Committed Antmusic's Avatar
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    Amazon actually gives people a guideline when listing... I think they should force people to answer a checklist of items... Like ex-library? Dust jacket? Etc

    And... Ex-library doesn't equal "Very good." I believe Amazon tells listers to mark ex-library books as "acceptable". Any kind of writing, gluing, stamping in a book lowers the value a lot for collectors. For readers, not so much.

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    Senior Member 1st Electroshock Session
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    Ah, never sold on Amazon before, or even Ebay for that matter, so wasn't sure on that part for the listings, but if that is their rules and guidelines then I see many people wrongly describing the condition as I have seen plenty of good and very good ex-library listings

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    Senior Member Starting to Drool Incessantly frik51's Avatar
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    I only buy books (eBay) from sellers I trust.
    Plus, I always want to see photos of the book I buy.
    A seller's eBay rating of 100% positive does help as well.

    sk

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    Ditto i have been burned on ebay before and now (especially for high end books) i only buy from people i know or from Abe where sellers seems to know more about what they are selling and can provide detailed pictures. Nothing worse that expecting a fine book and getting one that has faults.

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    Senior Member Receiving Daily Medication
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    I usually buy thru Alibris.com and have found that the major sellers are very good with grading their books properly.

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    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed njhorror's Avatar
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    For years, I've bought through eBay, Amazon, Alibris, AddAll, ABE, etc. and have had very few disappointments (usually books stated as Fine and being in V.Good condition). If I have a dispute with a seller I'll chase them through hell to get it made right. If someone ever had a problem with something that I've sold - they could return it. That's never happened.
    Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

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    Senior Member Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... srboone's Avatar
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    I've had two bad expereinces with Amazon on this and each time, I got to keep the book and got a 100% refund. Then I kept the book until I could replace it. I don't order an item unless it says "Not price clipped" and "not ex-library".
    "I'm a vegan. "

    ---Kirby Bliss Blanton , The Green Inferno (2013)

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    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed darkdiscoveries's Avatar
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    Yeah, this plain sucks! I've been burned a couple times as well this way. Not only on Amazon does this happen, but also ebay too. As a couple of you guys have said, an ex-library copy - even in pretty good condition besides markings/stamps - can be worth a fraction of the value of the book. I've picked up a few ex-library copies on purpose for $2 or $3 bucks from the used library store or book sales, but you know what you're getting there. A good reader's copy.

    I've sold a couple as well on ebay, direct, etc. but always made sure people know that. Some books are still pretty rare and ex-library copies might still be valuable if in good shape (I've had a couple Stephen King Doubleday firsts that have sold for a good amount for example), but most are worth about 1/4 - 1/8 of the cover price if that.

    The sellers should definitely list it in their auction/listing though. If not it is misleading and I would report them or ask for your money (or at least part if it back). I would beware too the sellers that list a number of ex-library copies for very cheap and then some books not stated as ex-library ones but also for very cheap prices. Sometimes if it seems to be too good to be true it is.

    - James
    http://darkdiscoveries.com
    Last edited by darkdiscoveries; 06-29-2011 at 06:28 PM. Reason: typo

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    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed njhorror's Avatar
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    There was a guy on the boards, awhile back, that used to steal books from libraries, sell them on eBay, and then asked if anyone thought that it might be wrong.

    Where the hell was he brought up - in jail?
    Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

  11. #11
    Senior Member Ok, I really can't come up with anymore of these stupid things... srboone's Avatar
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    When I was in the Navy, I bought a shiphandling text on e-bay from someone I discovered was actually at the same command. My operations officer saw me carrying it around one day and asked me where I got it. I told her and she asked me to check on page 77 for a certain notation. It was there. I asked her if she wanted it back--I'd only paid 5 dollars for it, but she said no. She also said she didn't want to know who the seller was either. Good thing, it was my supervisor, someone she recommended for a spot promotion.

    Some people.....
    Last edited by srboone; 07-01-2011 at 04:00 PM.
    "I'm a vegan. "

    ---Kirby Bliss Blanton , The Green Inferno (2013)

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    Sometimes a library copy is the only way of getting a book and when that happens i am very happy with it

  13. #13
    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed njhorror's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tito_Villa View Post
    Sometimes a library copy is the only way of getting a book and when that happens i am very happy with it


    Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    Hey i love my UK 1st editions of James Herbert's 'The Rats' and Stephen King's 'Carrie', yes they are ex-library but they are so scare i am lucky to have any book at all. At most there were 1,000 copies of 'The Rats' and 600 copies of 'Carrie' produced and then how many of them went into the public and not libraries???

  15. #15
    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed njhorror's Avatar
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    I have no problem with ex-library, I have a few great ones myself that are stamped as being sold by the library, but it's the ones that were stolen from libraries that I wouldn't touch. It only encourages theft.
    Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

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    Senior Member Hearing Voices Tito_Villa's Avatar
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    True stealing is badddd

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    Senior Member Involuntarily Committed darkdiscoveries's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by njhorror View Post
    I have no problem with ex-library, I have a few great ones myself that are stamped as being sold by the library, but it's the ones that were stolen from libraries that I wouldn't touch. It only encourages theft.
    Me either! It's a good way to get a copy of a long sold out HC for $2 - $5 or so and a good cheap read. Or if you don't want to shell out $30 or $40 or more for a new author or something. A couple of the King firsts or other very rare HC's that i've had that were ex-library copies were in better shape than ones I bought that weren't. And some are almost impossible to find otherwise.

    My problem is just when people are misleading or plain dishonest in their listings. Leaving out an item condition spec like an ex-library is pretty big.

    - James
    http://darkdiscoveries.com

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    Senior Member 1st Rubber Room Confinement mhatchett's Avatar
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    Book Clubs get on my nerves when not ID'd as such. They should have their own category. I own a few, but I want to know what I'm getting.

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