Amazon Fraud

I made a short video to talk about something that sellers have been allowed to get away with on Amazon. This is fraud! I ordered the two books mentioned in the video by ISBN number so I could get the editions my professor wanted us to order. Instead I got editions that are nothing like the ones most of my classmates received. While the words are more or less the same (there are sentences missing) the paragraphs aren’t. There are also no spaces between paragraphs, so it takes me a good 15 min to find a passage.

Apologies for the portrait layout of the video.

Look at one of the images in the book. You see the thing beneath it? The image must be a screen shot!

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3 thoughts on “Amazon Fraud

  1. Hi, Fariba. This is a serious problem on Amazon – which I am confident that Amazon is aware of and has decided to ignore. The only way to purchase a print version of a public domain classic and be assured that you are going to get the Penguin Classics or Norton Critical or Oxford World Classics editions is to buy them new directly from amazon. It is often difficult to even FIND those editions by searching, because crappy print on demand versions are often the ones that come up in a search, and the also boughts will take you to other POD versions as opposed to legitimate versions by reputable publishers.

    The problem with POD versions is not just that they lack the scholarly introduction which is frequently an important part of the reason that the reader purchases the edition, but because they are incredibly ugly, with lots of typographical errors (they seem to be taken from OCR’d versions with little to no proofreading), hideous formatting, and poorly constructed.

    I’ve personally contacted amazon and attempted to get them to care about the issue. It is clear to me that they do not care about this problem – looking at the reviews of any classic and you often find one-star reviews referencing what are clearly POD editions that people have ordered thinking that they would receive a legitimate edition (Wuthering Heights is a good example – go to the reviews on the Penguin edition and check out the one star reviews. Few of them relate to the content of the book and a lot of them relate to a POD version that has a cover designed to fool the unwary into thinking that they are buying a black spine edition). It’s unfortunate that the buyer has to learn this scam by falling for it, but until amazon decides to care, that’s the way it’s going to be.

    The one tip that I can give you is that if you are struggling with finding a reputable edition through their flawed search engine, I often search with a publisher name to try to wade through the crap (i.e., Les Liasons Dangereuses Oxford) and then I buy a copy directly from amazon rather than going through “other sellers.”

    Good luck!

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