Good morning bookies! Stand by for news and comment.
Wow, have I been dogging the blogging. Sorry about that. The cat’s been away, I hope the mice have taken advantage. The other night, just after 10 pm, three 8′ bookcases decided to topple over in the home office of the BBG Cave, smashing this, that and just about everything in their path. The cleanup continues, but along with all of the other stuff one deals with in everyday life, it hasn’t left much time for bringing you book news. For which I apologize. Let’s get to it.
*** As Ebay continues to flounder about like…like…well, like a flounder gasping for air on a boat dock, Bonanzle continues to grow at a pace not seen before in ecommerce. I was one of the first few hundred to join, as of today the membership stands at over 28,000, with over one million items listed. BBG at Bonanzle. A number of articles have been published lately documenting their rise.
*** And yet, with ebay’s idiocy well documented by now, there are still so-called journalists out there that are so far behind the curve they still give credence to ebay’s press releases. Seriously, for those who follow this on a regular basis, you read articles like this and wonder if the person who wrote it even knows how to turn on their computer, they are so far out of the loop. But I guess somebody has to write a fluff piece and this doofus volunteered.
Contrast that fluff piece with this much better thought out look at the dying ebay. It’s amazing what happens when someone who actually understands ecommerce and is familiar with the details of what Donohoe has done to destroy his company writes about it.
*** Okay, maybe a catalogue is stretching the news about books thing just a little, but not so much that it bothers me. When the Nazis overran Europe, one gets the sense that is was more to arrange a shopping spree than for any other reason. Most of the bigwigs gobbled up collections of this or that, but the most voracious collector of them all was Hermann Goring. Now a catalogue of his ill-gotten gains has been compiled. I wish I knew how many of these had been returned to their rightful owners.
*** Forrest Ackerman has long been considered the greatest collector in SFandom. When he died he vowed to take it with him but, so it would appear, that really isn’t possible. Thus, the bulk of his collection is being auctioned off and is expected to bring a cool half mil. Having once met him I can say that I found him a gracious and genuinely kind man. One of the good ones.
*** Not long ago I profiled The History Press, a publisher that whose mission I greatly admire. They are in the news now, in a good way. It seems they felt obligated to pay back royalties to some authors, even though they were not legally libel for them, and have now done so. The CEO who oversaw this operation has stepped down now that the job is done.
So let me get this straight: a company does the right thing even though they don’t have to. And the man whose job it was to accomplish this moves on when his job is finished. Can this be true? Do ethics and morals still exist in business today? I guess they do. Who’d a thunk it?
*** Let’s put this under the category of ‘Laughing so you don’t cry.’ It seems that Bill Ayers, the terrorist who tried to kill people as a member of the Weather Underground, a group that did its best to kill people, good friend and mentor of the new president, is getting his own graphic novel. That’s right, a member of a group of would-be murderers not only gets to walk the streets, he also gets illustrated editions of his books. Too bad they failed, he probably would have gotten a bigger advance. Nice gig.
He tried to kill people, failed, and now gets paid for it
*** I guess most bookies know that I was once an avid comic book collector. And, like every other collector, I drooled at the thought of stumbling on a copy of Action Comics #1, the first appearance of Superman. And before you ask, no, it didn’t happen. But it did happen to someone else, even if it was 59 years ago. And when a cherished comic like this finally leaves its owner’s hand and comes on the marketplace, it’s very big news indeed.
The first linked article explains how and where this comic comes from. That’s interesting. But what’s even more interesting to me is that, while the comic will be auctioned online, the word ‘ebay’ is nowhere in the picture. Instead, the auctioneer will be using their own website. Ha! For those who follow such things this spells doom for ebay, because when they are no longer attracting this sort of high profile rarity you know things are turning south. Oh, and by the way, the original Superman didn’t fly, he could just leap a really long way.