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Old 07-22-2014, 12:49 PM   #16
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I use to feel bad but honestly B&N just annoys me now. Every time we go (the last time was a couple of weeks ago), the store never has anything that interests us. There are more toys, trinkets, and non-book stuff than books. Our Borders use to actually have a good book selection before it closed. Their closing truly saddened me. B&N honestly never did. If this B&N closes, I think I'll be, at best, ambivalent about it. The last book my husband bought was from Amazon.
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Old 07-22-2014, 12:53 PM   #17
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Well, if you were looking for something to pass the time, you could have picked up a crossword or sudoku puzzle book.
I am not smart enough for sudoku. I bought my daughter (who was about 12 at the time) and myself a sudoku book before a 2-week vacation one year. I was on puzzle 10, and she was 1/3 of the way through the book (it was either 250 or 500 puzzles, either way, my progress was pitiful.)
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Old 07-22-2014, 01:18 PM   #18
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No. You are not.
No consumer is obliged to support any business for any reason other than receiving fair value in goods and/or services for your hard earned money.

There is no reason to guilt-trip yourself for acting rationally (in both the economics and real world senses). And paying for something you can legally/ethically/morally get for "free" (you pay your local taxes, right?) is not rational.

It is up to them to offer up something useful or of value that you can't get elsewhere if they want your money.
Thanks. Not really guilt, because obviously I cannot myself keep a bookstore open. But I understand why they are leaving. And I don't think my behavior is irrational. A quarter of the store is taken up with "stuff," rather than books. There used to be a section for staff picks, but now it was teen bestsellers and children's bestsellers in addition to NYT bestsellers.

I remember before ereaders, before the internet, really, you could spend hours in a bookstore, just taking a look at all the books. Now, they just have the stuff I see on the internet. I did pick up the books n bytes magazine, and learned about the book "California." It looked good, so I recommended it to my library.

I guess my lament is about the lack of personal interaction in our current society. It used to be, if you wanted to see a movie, you went to the theatre. If you wanted to buy a book, you went to a book store. If you wanted groceries, yarn, clothing, just about anything but a car, you went someplace, probably several someplaces, and interacted with people. Now, you see young people texting back and forth when they are sitting right next to each other!

Oh well, The world will continue on, I suppose.
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Old 07-22-2014, 02:58 PM   #19
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Thanks. Not really guilt, because obviously I cannot myself keep a bookstore open. But I understand why they are leaving. And I don't think my behavior is irrational. A quarter of the store is taken up with "stuff," rather than books. There used to be a section for staff picks, but now it was teen bestsellers and children's bestsellers in addition to NYT bestsellers.

I remember before ereaders, before the internet, really, you could spend hours in a bookstore, just taking a look at all the books. Now, they just have the stuff I see on the internet. I did pick up the books n bytes magazine, and learned about the book "California." It looked good, so I recommended it to my library.

I guess my lament is about the lack of personal interaction in our current society. It used to be, if you wanted to see a movie, you went to the theatre. If you wanted to buy a book, you went to a book store. If you wanted groceries, yarn, clothing, just about anything but a car, you went someplace, probably several someplaces, and interacted with people. Now, you see young people texting back and forth when they are sitting right next to each other!

Oh well, The world will continue on, I suppose.

I agree about not liking to see local business fail. I have numerous small stores that I support because I appreciate the convenience or the quality. Most of my non electronic shopping is done at B&M stores.

Aside from bookstores, which seemed to be taking a big hit long before Amazon and other online booksellers, things haven't changed much in my city.

Big chains take over smaller chains and are in turn taken over themselves. Small businesses open and close. Quite a few expand into small chains.

In the dense commercial areas and malls, 99% of the space is occupied, and these areas get larger not smaller. There are exceptions, smaller suburbs are over building retail space and expecting exorbitant rents with no foot traffic etc. but this is not from businesses failing.

I think that most things will continue as usual for a few years at least and society will adapt to preserve itself.

Of course we may evolve into a SF type society where we will all be fed by tubes and have brain implants. Somehow I doubt it as most people want to get out and about occasionally.

Helen
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Old 07-22-2014, 02:58 PM   #20
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I remember before ereaders, before the internet, really, you could spend hours in a bookstore, just taking a look at all the books.
Back in the day a couple of my friends and I had a routine for summer blockbuster movies: take in an afternoon showing, plop in to the friday's next door, finish up at borders. Our fantasy for winning the lotto (without playing) was called Borders day. For obvious reasons.

Time changes, we adapt and move on or get stuck trying to roll back the clock.
I prefer to keep on moving. Makes me a harder target to hit.
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Old 07-22-2014, 03:10 PM   #21
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I do think the day will come when our local B&N closes. We will be very sad, and I won't blame myself.
I would like to feel sorry for B&N, but then I remember all the independents and smaller bookstore chains they ran out of business in my lifetime. We have a strong used bookstore chain in the DFW area, Half Price Books, where I go regularly. Actually they're expanding fairly rapidly into other areas. I do go to B&N from time to time but I don't find much featured there. Shelf after shelf of Twilight clones. I used to pick up computer books there, but PDFs make more sense, apparently, as their selection has dwindled to a few shelves.
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Old 07-22-2014, 03:49 PM   #22
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[...snip...] I guess my lament is about the lack of personal interaction in our current society. It used to be, if you wanted to see a movie, you went to the theatre. If you wanted to buy a book, you went to a book store. If you wanted groceries, yarn, clothing, just about anything but a car, you went someplace, probably several someplaces, and interacted with people. Now, you see young people texting back and forth when they are sitting right next to each other!

Oh well, The world will continue on, I suppose.
The world changes and we must move on with it. My grandmother used to recite Robert Service poetry around the wood stove at night, and she held me enthralled. Those days died when she did. My parents told family stories of Atlanta burning, surviving Shilo, pushing a cart from New Orleans to Salt Lake City, and recovering from Andersonville by carving peach seeds into lovely little baskets that survive to this day. Either I had little interest in repeating them to my children or they weren't interested. But I have written them down and placed them on various online websites for any relative with an interest. I still get requests (email, text, or FB) from various younger family members for the written stories since I am apparently now the family historian.

I see no lack of socialization today. We just interact in different ways. In many ways, our opportunities to interact with others are greater now.
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Old 07-22-2014, 04:19 PM   #23
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I see no lack of socialization today. We just interact in different ways. In many ways, our opportunities to interact with others are greater now.
Yes, but "interacting" and "socialization" are two very different things...
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Old 07-22-2014, 05:56 PM   #24
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Yes, but "interacting" and "socialization" are two very different things...
Agreed. My Dad says that television basically killed interaction in neighborhoods. I think he's right -- and the so-called "social networks" are taking that isolation to a whole new level.
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Old 07-22-2014, 07:57 PM   #25
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Yes, but "interacting" and "socialization" are two very different things...
You are so right. I dashed that last post off in a nostalgic moment and with an 'if you can't beat 'em, join 'em' attitude. Rereading it even makes me sad. Reminds me of a sentence written by John Steinbeck in Travels with Charley: I wonder why progress looks so much like destruction. (possibly paraphrased, but when he gets to Seattle later in the book.)

Television did kill much neighborhood interaction along with family story and game times. But I believe that social networking sites have more positives than negatives. Time will tell. I can't lament the passing of the big chain book stores. I have recently seen several independent book stores adaptable enough to survive Borders and B&N and will survive the digital age.

Like those indie book stores, we also survive by being adaptable and not wasting precious time hand-wringing over our losses. And I'm old enough to have street cred about survival.
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Old 07-22-2014, 08:49 PM   #26
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When I lived in the UK a couple of years back, I used to frequent 2nd hand bookstores and sometimes buy out of print books or old books I used to own and got for nostalgic reasons.

But since moving to Australia, I find even 2nd book stores are quite expensive and not really much cheaper at all than new pbooks.
I don't buy pbooks anymore any except in special circumstances, so I don't bother visiting bookstores much.

I still occasionally buy old or out of print books online via ebay, so if bookstores are using ebay and such, then I guess I'm supporting them in that way.

From time to time I visit a bookstore to see what they have but I guess I'm spoiled for choice with ebooks now.
I don't really want to dedicate much space for pbooks in my house anymore anyway.

I suppose it'd be sad to see physical bookstores disappear, but I guess I've moved on and unless they adapt to make going back interesting or worth it for me, I probably won't return.
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:27 PM   #27
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I never fail to find an interesting book in almost all the bookstores i go. I must have a restriction order for the sake of my bank account. I read ebooks and paper books in equal shares (i miss one when i have too much of the other).

And yes, i miss the smell and weight of a paper book:
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Old 07-22-2014, 09:30 PM   #28
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Genius!!! I just found out what to put in my request list to Santa!

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Old 07-22-2014, 10:48 PM   #29
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Old 07-23-2014, 02:51 PM   #30
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I would like to feel sorry for B&N, but then I remember all the independents and smaller bookstore chains they ran out of business in my lifetime.
I'm going to throw a flag on this common misconception. To my knowledge, B&N has never "run" anyone out of business. To my mind, that implies a targeted, conscious, concerted effort to drive others out of business.

Most of the book stores I've seen suffer and go under from competition with B&N was a product of their own choices. Many of the owners/managers were nice people, who got into it because they loved books, but had no great head for business. They had survived in a certain type of market, where they were the only choice around. Then faced with the competition of a bigger, stronger business they caved.

Some would say that B&N's bestseller pricing was predatory, but it was not below cost. Many indys were able to adapt and change. Many didn't.
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