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Thursday, February 3, 2011

Booklovers, Browsers, Cash Customers Welcome; Cell Phone Pirates and Freeloaders, Not

There are some people I don’t want in my bookstore at all, and one of them is a nationally known book author. Can you believe this story? The man wrote a book and presumably he wants people to read it, and yet he and his wife visited a bookstore, sat on the floor, piled up books all around them, took pictures of pages with their cell phones and left without buying a thing, having harvested all they wanted for free. To top it all off, now the guy asks, “Did we do anything wrong?” You messy, rude, inconsiderate, free-loading cheapskate! Do you really need to ask? Is this how your parents raised you, or has modern technology really made you (the question you ask in your book, which I only know from reading the reviews and a book which I will now never read) stupid? Note to guy's publisher: Do not send me a review copy. If this is the future, let me live in the past until I die.


Susan said...

Please name the fellow, or at least give us a link to where he is named.

Gerry said...

And then he takes his plaintive question to a Stanford law professor who says "Is it morally incorrect? Maybe." MAYBE?

There is a serious problem with ethics in this culture, and it isn't the kids I'm worried about. It's people like The Guy.

Fortunately, in this particular present that we all live in -- even The Guy -- there are still more people who are polite, considerate, and toting their own weight. You will notice I didn't address the messy part; I'm a little sensitive about that one.

Keep warm.

P. J. Grath said...

Susan, there is a link. Gerry found it. I didn't use the guy's name because I don't like to add to the publicity of individuals and businesses whose practices I abhor.

Gerry, you are absolutely right!!! I'm in my 18th year of business and have never yet had to ask anyone to leave my shop. (David asked if I would, if someone behaved as "the guy" did. Yes. I would.) Most people who visit bookstores are wonderful, which is what keeps booksellers happy in their chosen work, and even the ones who are a little grouchy are seldom outright boors. Messy? You didn't make a mess in my bookstore when you were here, Gerry--and you didn't complain about my dust bunnies, either.

Dawn said...

Wow. Sounds like he was taking advantage where he thought he could get away with it. Glad he didn't get away totally scott free.

Anonymous said...

And then he takes his plaintive question to a Stanford law professor who says "Is it morally incorrect? Maybe." MAYBE?
Gerry, those were my first thoughts too as I read the linked article.

Not only is Nick Bilton a pirate but The New York Times paid him to write about his theft. That should really get all of our goats.

P. J. Grath said...

The mistake was in asking a law professor rather than a philosopher. :) Couldn't resist that one!

Billiecat said...

The problem is some people don't know the difference between a library and a bookstore.

But hey, if I pull out my cell phone and take a picture of a book in Dog Ears, it's because I'm scanning the UPC to look up reviews on LibraryThing, so please don't throw me out!

P. J. Grath said...

Billiecat, you can share the review with me, and that will be interesting, but don't tell me that there's a copy of the book in an online auction selling for a penny and ask me to match the price! :)