Dear Mr. Aiken,
I wish to show my support for the sale of used books everywhere books are sold, including Amazon. To prohibit the sale of used books because it harms the bottom line for the industry is ludicrous.
What is this, an analog version of RIAA vs. Napster?
In our material culture we tend to purchase lots of items but rarely keep them beyond, or near, their intended life span. The sale of used products (books, sewing machines, etc.) not only helps to extend the life of these items, it’s also an integral part of the US economy and culture.
Ever been to a garage sale? Are you going to require that people who hold garage sales make sure and cut a royalty check to the Authors Guide?
I have yet to meet an author who would rather one person read his/her book vs. giving, selling, lending their books to as many people as possible. Authors are artist, and artist want to share their work with as many people as possible. It’s a very important part of the function (and creative need) of how art works.
Selling used books is one means, and a very effective one, for growing the audience by getting new, unknown, and best selling authors into the hands of those who might not have otherwise come to know them for financial reasons.
At $7-10 for a paperback book these days, the cost somewhat prohibitive. Most used book stores offer these treasures normally for half their new retail value thereby making these products affordable to another economic class.
Instead of spending time, energy, and money to work against successful businesses that sell books, why not work with them to help sell more books, new and used.
Better yet, why not divert all of these resources away from Amazon and towards literacy programs? The more people who learn to read, the more customers your industry will have.