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Have you noticed this on Amazon.com?

  1. Jul 4, 2011 #1
    I've noticed that recently amazon.com has stopped showing old editions of books when you do a search, it only gives the latest edition. I don't know if this is done for all books, but I've certainly noticed it quite often. What a pity.

    For example, when I was an undergrad I remember using the 1st edition of Bransden and Joachain for QM (very good book, btw) because I thought it was much better than Griffiths. So now I went to amazon.com to look for this book because I'd like to brush up on my QM; lo and behold:
    Only the 2nd edition is given. Not even adding '1st Edition' to the search helps.

    I also distinctly remember reading a few years ago the reviews for the first edition of this book on amazon. From what I could gather the editions may be different. Now I wonder how different is the 2nd edition and if I should get it or not. Where has that 1st edition and its reviews disappeared to?

    Anyway, my point is not to discuss this book, but that amazon is not showing old editions of books. I've also noticed this for quite a few other books. Together with the fact that many reviews on amazon seem not to be worth much, I find myself visiting it less often.
    Last edited: Jul 4, 2011
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 4, 2011 #2
    I checked on Migraine by Oliver Sacks since I know there are differences between editions.

    It isn't possible to tell what edition anyone is selling! The sellers aren't listing year of publication for their copy.

    So, I'm not sure they are not selling first editions, it's just that they aren't saying what edition they have for sale. That's bad. Sacks almost always corrects things from earlier editions in later ones, and also expands some explanations in his footnotes.
  4. Jul 4, 2011 #3
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2017
  5. Jul 4, 2011 #4
    I hadn't noticed that. Good sleuthing.

    Mh, yes, I hadn't noticed that either. But look at the aforementioned page for Bransden & Joachain:
    It doesn't have anything similar.

    It seems like amazon does different things with different books. Anyway, it's much easier to use abebooks or something like that.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2017
  6. Jul 4, 2011 #5


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    Just browsing around a few other sites that typically link to other available editions none of them linked to a first edition, so it doesn't appear to be specific to Amazon but rather this book.
  7. Jul 4, 2011 #6


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    I'd recommend going to abebooks or some other used-book site to get more comprehensive information on version, year of publication, etc.

    Amazon carries too much stuff, and has to (necessarily) limit the amount of information that they post about each item, unless it a good seller.

    Edit: qspeehc beat me to it, but that's the way to get decent information on your purchase.
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