AE Monthly

Articles - December - 2004 Issue

Biblio, Bibliopoly, Bibliophile: Just Who Are These B's?

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Bibliophile.net is a bit overwhelming with infomation.


When you first go to the site, you are taken to a lengthy page of instructions. They can be of value for those willing to spend the time to absorb them, but I suspect, for the average seeker, they are a bit overwhelming. This site is operated from Switzerland, and perhaps Europeans are more willing to delve deeply into instructions before moving on. As an American, I can tell you that we are loathe to read instructions, and our attention spans are about as long as....what was I saying?

Perhaps the orientation is a reflection of ownership. This site is run by Ammonet, a website hosting company, deeply into the technical. They also offer their service and format for book sites to others, and are probably worth a look if you want someone to help you manage your own bookselling website. This is their specialty. In fact, they manage the previously discussed site, Bibliopoly, for its owners. Like Bibliopoly, Bibliophile.net is available in five languages. However, it does not specialize in high-end books.

If the technical orientation makes this site a bit less user-friendly, it can add some useful features. Here's one I like. It lets you search for either all listings, or just those added in the last day, week, or month. This enables you to look just for new listings without searching through every listing ever entered. That's a time-saver.

Bibliophile.net lists 351 booksellers, and while they are worldwide, there is a surprising concentration of American dealers for a Swiss site. They say they have 2 million books listed. A search for Innocents Abroad found 43 copies, confirming they must have that many listings in total. The listings did not come up in any particular order I could ascertain, and the presentation was not that easy to follow. Prices ranged from $2.73 for a 1959 copy in poor condition to $1,500 for a first edition. Bibliophile.net has a ways to go to be a major site in the book field, but their ability to provide independent dealers with their own sites, plus import those listing to their common site, gives them an unusual capability that perhaps will enable them to develop into something much more than they are today.

The link to Bibliophile.net is: www.bibliophile.net.

AE Monthly


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