For the Book Buyer(work in progress)
DID YOU KNOW there are many multi-dealer web sites, with millions of
books to choose from, who have ethical standards for their book dealers and
don't have the advertising budget of an Amazon, Abe or Alibris? We hope this
page will help you have a more pleasant on-line book buying experience. If we
don't have the book you are looking for, of course :-)
Before we start talking about multi-dealer web sites, we would like
to mention two organizations. The first is known as the
Independent Online Booksellers Association
(IOBA). In part their mission statement says
"The Independent Online Booksellers Association, is dedicated
to promoting internet bookselling by: ... Promoting trust between customers
and booksellers by providing a safe online environment for the purchase and
sale of books."
IOBA was started, in part, for the same reason as the initial idea behind this
page but for individual book dealers instead of multi-dealer listing sites. The
above link will point you toward their book dealer ethics page and mission
statement. We are proud to be a member of the IOBA. A full membership list
can be found at
IOBA Membership List.
The second organization is a group know as
Global Book Town
(GBT). Global Book Town Independent Booksellers is a bookshop neighborhood on
the Internet. In Global Book Town you can visit different used bookstores,
wander through the GBT community and browse their member bookshops' selection
of used, rare, and out-of-print books. Many stock new books as well. Fiction
or nonfiction, the book you want just might be in one of the GBT used
bookstores. Each of the bookstores is independent, with its own specialties.
The site is organized into streets, a list of book categories (including
Academic, Childrens Books, Fantasy, Literary Criticism, Science Fiction,
Young Adult, and many more), a directory of booksellers by location, and an
alphabetical list of the GBT member bookstores. Membership requires, in
* Terms of sale, shipping, and payment options must be easily accessible to
the public. Each bookstore is free to decide types of payment accepted,
areas to which it is willing to ship books and forms of shipment.
* Each bookstore is expected to be reasonable in both the prices at which
books are offered and the shipping and handling fees it charges."
Quite a few book shoppers are not familiar with some of the "smaller"
multi-dealer listing sites. We thought it might be beneficial to put up a list of
links to some multi-dealer web sites which have a stated 'good ethics' policy for
their booksellers and enforce that policy [NOTE: We are stating our opinion but we
can't guarantee your experience on other sites].
We list on both of these sites.
Buying on line should be a good experience for everyone. Here are
a few tips for the on-line Book Shopper:
A good tip for having a more pleasant on-line buying experience: All
dealers have different policies for such things as refunds/returns, payment
methods accepted, shipping, etc. It is a very good idea to READ these policies
BEFORE you make your first order. If you would like to see our policy in
dealing with customers, please look at our
White Unicorn Store Policies.
We have found that most dealers are very happy to correct any mistake
on their part, so if you have a problem please contact the dealer. If you
cannot obtain satisfaction from the dealer and your order was through one of
the web sites above, please contact the web site through the 'Contact Link'.
The list above is not meant to be a guarantee of a good transaction.
All businesses like the listing web sites get complaints about bad
transactions with a dealer on their web site, at least those which have been
around long enough. Some are valid and some are not. One of the things we
hope to do with this list is to help on-line book buyers and those web sites
which are trying to help the customer when they come across an unscrupulous
dealer who lists on their web site. If information can be collected for all
of these web sites in one place and be presented to the web sites, then that
unscrupulous dealer can not just change web sites and start fresh "with no
complaints against them". You can send this information directly to the web
site contact link or we can pass on this information for you. We are offering
to pass on the information (all correspondance between the reporting party
and ourselves and between the dealer and ourselves). At present, we don't
know of anyone else who does.
If you know of a web site which is not on the list but you think
deserves to be, please contact us at
[Note: This page is for multi dealer listing web sites but if you have
a favorite individual web site you would like us to link to, send us the
information]. Any multi-dealer listing web site who has a stated 'good
ethics' policy for their booksellers, where that policy is 'findable' by
customers of the site and where they enforce that policy is welcome to be
added to the list. Of course we would have to contact that web-site and
see if they want to be added to this list. If you send us a web site, we
will contact them.
De and Joan
Questions, comments, or suggestions
Please write to