The Once and Future Bookseller

Scott Carlson, Tidsskriftet for Universiteternes Efter- og Videreuddannelse, Dec 12, 2002
Commentary by Stephen Downes

The first think you'll notice in this argicle is a graph showing dramatically declining stock prices. The numbers are for Varisty Books, the online bookseller set up to compete with university bookstores. Call that Plan A. Now scrap it. "Perhaps the only things that have changed more for the online bookseller are its reputation, its business models, and its fortunes... Its sales pitch to colleges, in a nutshell: Selling textbooks, with their typically low profit margins, is a hassle and often a financial drain, so why bother? Let Varsity handle all that." Instead of competing with university bookstores, Varisty Books aims to replace them.
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