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Topic: Why should audio books be 2 points?

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Subject: Why should audio books be 2 points?
Date Posted: 2/5/2008 2:33 AM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 73
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I've always wondered why PBS determined that audiobooks, either tapes or CDs, are inherently worth more (2 pts) than print books (1 point). Many of the books I've received here are heavy, pricey books -- they're definitely worth more than some of the 2-tape abridged books listed for 2 points, and cost more to ship.

Has anyone ever read why PBS made that decision and if they have ever considered changing it?

 

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 2:47 AM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2005
Posts: 1,586
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Hi again....I never read an explaination but that is the rule. I stopped posting many NEW on the bestseller lists HC and paperbacks because I do not think this is right. I mean I have some books that are NEW and cost me over $26.00  nobody else has posted them ..A couple books are wled by well over 200 people and I will never let them go for 1 credit...This is just my opinion but why should these books in MUCH demand NEW and costly to mail be woth less then a 7 year old used audio book.  I am buying the new Patterson tomorrow 7TH HEAVEN ...I have Double Cross...I have so many books and use to trade them here but am kinda gun shy now

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 5:54 AM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2006
Posts: 15,930
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I don't have any idea about audio books being 2 credits.  I'm sure there's a good reason!  Maybe someone else has some ideas :)

As for books - all books are 1 credit - and in my experience, it all evens out.  I've sent out new Hardcovers many times - and I've sent out used children's books that are small and cheap - both for one credit each.  And it's evened out in reverse as well - I've gotten both.

I like the Help Center's explanation:

  • Yes, hardcovers can be more expensive to send
    • they are generally larger and heavier than paperbacks
    • but some paperbacks are larger/heavier than some hardbacks.

  • The complexity of pro-rating book "cost" by weight would complicate what we want to be a simple process.
    • We think ease of swapping is of paramount importance.

  • If you want to receive a hardcover in return for each hardcover you send out:
    • You can always limit your requests to hardcovers only.
    • That way, you will not be spending more in postage than the senders spend to send you the books you want.

 

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 7:32 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2005
Posts: 20,024
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Audio books are worth two credits because on average an audio book costs twice as much as a hardcover. Average cost of a hard cover is $25 average cost of an audio is around $50. There are some childrens audios that cost one credit but for the most part they are all 2.

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 7:35 AM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2007
Posts: 6,435
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I don't know, I always just assumed it was for simplicity's sake.  I think it would get really complicated if some new hardcovers were 2 points and some tapes were 1 point, but others were different.  I think in general, books are cheaper and audio books are more expensive--again, not always, but in general.  For me it has seemed to even out pretty well.

On a related note--recently I shipped a very large, heavy, great condition cookbook that cost me over $3 to mail.  The person who received it was so grateful they sent me an extra credit!  I thought that was so sweet, and very unexpected.  : )

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 7:39 AM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
Posts: 5,703
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Audio books are pretty expensive and have a higher resale value as well.  Plus they don't wear out like books will.  Some audiobooks retail at $50-75, like the Harry Potter ones.  I know when I buy audiobooks from the used book store, they are always $15 and up.  A used copy of a new hardcover, such as 7th Heaven by Patterson, would be under $10.  I wouldn't post any audiobooks here if they were only one credit, not when I could easily sell them for a whole lot more.  Eventually hardcovers go to paperback and their value goes down significantly.  I don't buy any hardcovers anyway that I'm not going to keep unless I get a really good deal on them, so I don't mind posting the ones I do have.  They are widely available here at PBS, while audiobooks are not.

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 12:52 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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I figure it comes down to initial cost (if we are to buy new). Let's take the highly-sought-after A Thousand Splendid Suns, referencing B&N's web site.

The hardback list price is $25.95 (online price $18.16).

The Unabridged CD List Price is $39.95 (online price $31.96).

The Abridged CD List Price is $29.95 (online price $23.96). (As I understand it, many people prefer the unabridged)

Both versions of audio cost significantly more than a paper copy. What surprised me was the cost of the large print version. ($33.95 list, $27.16 online price)

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 1:59 PM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2007
Posts: 2,164
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On a related note--recently I shipped a very large, heavy, great condition cookbook that cost me over $3 to mail.  The person who received it was so grateful they sent me an extra credit!  I thought that was so sweet, and very unexpected.  : )

That's so awesome.  For all the complaints we hear on this forum about bad members, slow members, etc...it's great to hear when members do unexpectedly nice things!

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 2:40 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2005
Posts: 2,354
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The hardback list price is $25.95 (online price $18.16).
The Unabridged CD List Price is $39.95 (online price $31.96).
The Abridged CD List Price is $29.95 (online price $23.96). (As I understand it, many people prefer the unabridged)
Both versions of audio cost significantly more than a paper copy. What surprised me was the cost of the large print version. ($33.95 list, $27.16 online price)

I don't see a $4 difference in cost between the abridged & the hardback list as being "significant".  I don't even really see $14 difference as being that big a deal--it's not any more than between a hardback & a mass market paperback.  And the latter two are the same value on PBS.   Even at $40, the unabridged audio is less than some of the hardbacks I'm looking for!

Cassettes and CDs DO wear out.  Cassettes just by being used, and CDs if they aren't cared for very carefully.

I agree that unabridged CDs hold their value better than printed books.  I do not agree that cassettes do--especially abridged cassettes.  They are often still around after the bag sale.

(edited for formatting)



Last Edited on: 2/5/08 2:41 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 2/5/2008 3:07 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I woudn't post any Audiobooks if they were less than 2 credits. I buy them all used or on clearance and they are rarely under $10 even used.  I've found many recent Hardbacks at the UBS for $1.   And you have a choice. You don't have to buy hardback versions of your books if  you want to post them here. If you only like hardbacks then that's the choice you make. If you don't want to send them out on PBS then list them on ebay, Half.com or sell them to the used book store.  If you think a short audiobook isn't worth 2 credits than you can always ask for a 2 for 1 deal-I see them on the Book Bazaar for audios sometimes.  Or you can try to find it on Ebay. But w/shipping you probably won't get it for less than the cost of 2 credits.  A long audiobook can be a little more costly to mail as well by the time you box them up or have to buy an envelope big enough to mail them.  I don't trust just wrapping them in paper and mailing them off. 

ETA: I think there are other book trading websites where you can charge more than 1 credit for a book right?  Try one of those for the Hardbacks.  Lots of people belong to more than one book trading site.



Last Edited on: 2/5/08 3:09 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/5/2008 10:37 PM ET
Member Since: 8/17/2005
Posts: 1,586
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I was just at Barnes and Nobel tonight and there wasnt a huge differece in price between the HC book and the CD ...They do have an area of reduced books and reduced cd books...some of the CD's are lower than  a paperback book.....Not on the book I got I didnt even look at the CD but I saw a ton of 5.97  CD books that are not used like some were maybe only 6 months old.. I would still like to see the HC get more credits but I dont expect it to change...I STILL do not understand the reasoning. Minus say if a book and CD are both new then I can see it...I always DO release any HC book I got from this club it only seems fair as I got it here but I dont post new hardcovers anymore....

Date Posted: 2/5/2008 11:27 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,800
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Almost all HB books eventually get printed in PB.   That reduces the value of the HB.   You can see this in the big book stores in their Bargain sections.  There they sit - all those HB's that were so popular a few months ago but are not out in PB.      Hardback simply don't keep their value the way a CD does. 

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 2:04 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 8
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Generally, if I have a new hardcover to part with, I post it on Amazon. You can usually get most, if not all, of your money back. If I'm not hurting for money, I'll post it on PBS.

Then again, if I'm hurting for money, I'm not supposed to be buying new hardcovers!

Date Posted: 2/6/2008 8:25 PM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 73
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I'm not sure I agree with the premise that since audio books cost more new they're worth more here. If we set point value by retail cost, new hardcovers should be worth more.  I've seen some audio books listed here that are selling for a penny over on amazon yet cost 2 points.

Oh, it's no big deal really.  I just think any book -- HB, PB, tape, CD, big, small, older, new, bestseller or stinko -- should be one point. Seems like that would be fairer. But if that's my only complaint against PBS, I guess I must really really like it here, right?? (and I do!)

Barbara