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Posts Tagged ‘eBay’

NEA Launches ‘Blue Horse’ Charity Auction to Benefit Arts Education

The National Education Association (NEA) has teamed up with the NEA Foundation to host “The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse Charity Auction.”

The proceeds derived from the Internet auction will benefit the NEA Foundation’s “Art Inspires Learning, Learning Inspires Art” initiative. This project funds arts education grants for teachers. Follow this link to check out the artwork.

Here’s more from the release: “This initiative was inspired by Eric Carle‘s picture book The Artist Who Painted a Blue Horse, which celebrates imagination and artistic freedom. Each donated piece of art will feature that artist’s interpretation of a horse and celebrates imagination and the many and varied ways that each artist sees the world around him/her. The auction will include three waves of art: Group 1 will take place October 17th-27th. Group 2 will take place October 31st-November 10th. Group 3 will take place November 14th-24th.”

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Survey Finds 75% of College Students Stick to Print Textbooks

According to the Book Industry Study Group (BISG)‘s “Student Attitudes Toward Content in Higher Education” survey, 75 percent of college students prefer print textbooks over digital versions.

eBookNewser noted that 12 percent of those surveyed had purchased eBooks for convenience and lower prices.  This group consisted primarily of men pursuing MBAs and long-distance learning students.

The BISG survey also revealed: “Renting a textbook – rather than purchasing or downloading – was preferred by 11% of surveyed students … Survey respondents said they often buy previous editions of a textbook (16% did this for their current class ) or international versions (18% did this at least once) … Print study guides, Campus Learning Management Systems – such as Blackboard and WebCT – and diagnostic self-tests held high value for survey respondents.”

Amazon Offers Early Galleys, Online Payments

Though Amazon tried this idea once before without much success, the company has decided that sending out ARCs to hand-picked customer reviewers is a good thing, Ergo, Amazon Vine, which will “help our vendors generate awareness for new and pre-release products by connecting them with the voice of the Amazon community: our reviewers. Vine members, called Voices, may request free copies of items enrolled in the program and have the ability to share their opinions before these products become generally available.” The folks at LibraryThing note similarities to its own early release program.

Also, Marketwatch reports that Amazon will offer an online payments service that could compete with similar services from eBay and Google. Web services evangelist Jeff Barr said in a blog post that the company is formally introducing Amazon Flexible Payments Service, or FPS, which is intended to let developers build secure payment systems for their Internet sales. “As of this post FPS is now in a limited beta,” Barr said, adding however that “the entire payment system is fully functional.”

Postal Changes Means Bad News for Used Booksellers

The New York Times’ Bob Tedeschi reports on an upcoming change by the United States Postal Service that may have a dramatic impact on how used booksellers do business. That’s because as of mid-May, it would no longer transport goods internationally via cargo ships for individual customers. These so-called surface deliveries have been the crucial method by which booksellers have sold books to foreign markets because the cost is about one-third that of air mail. “If postage costs as much, if not more, than the book, it’ll be hard to sell books,” said Rob Stuart, owner of, a seller of rare and antique books in Frenchboro, Maine, population 75. “And maybe 25 percent or more of my books sell internationally.”

Analysts said would not be affected by the change; international book shipments represent a small fraction of its business, and because, like other high-volume businesses, it can qualify for discounts on foreign shipments. “We’re already competing with the special deals the Postal Service does with Amazon, eBay and the big book purveyors that get cut rates on postage because of volume,” Stuart told the NYT, emphasizing that the postal changes means the island’s mail deliveries could be threatened, and he may also be forced to lay off a part-time worker. “So when they drop economy international shipping, they’re playing with a model that talks about economies of scale – one that’s balanced by a few huge operations, and wipes out the little operations.”

Yvonne Yoerger, a spokeswoman for the Postal Service, said customers aren’t yet aware of other options. She told the NYT that “customized agreements” for surface mail are being developed for higher-volume shippers that will be enhanced over the next several months to address the needs of small businesses. “The Postal Service has a longstanding commitment to small businesses and is working to accommodate customers’ needs as the international mail changes take effect.”