Public Library Bookstore sign "No Scanners"

There is a non-profit community bookstore attached to the local library near where I live.

Its not usually open when I’m at the library, but there is a sign on the door that says “No Scanners”. Since its closed when I’m there I can’t ask what the sign means.

I’m just curious as to what type of scanner they are prohibiting and why.

Possibly they don’t like it when people scan the book into their iPhones or whatever and then decide to get the book elsewhere? “Thanks for all that effort of finding the book I wanted; I’ll go buy it on Amazon for $2 less.”

Probably people who make a living buying used books and reselling. They whip through used book stores, charity shops, etc., using hand-held scanners in smartphones and such to figure out the things they can sell for the highest price.

Edit: Or what dangermom said. I’m not sure why I assumed it was a used bookstore.

Personally, I use my scanner (iPhone’s Amazon app) to get book reviews off Amazon, to see if the book is worth buying or not. I don’t bypass buying the book if it’s good.

Is a scanner like a replicant?

My only guess is that maybe a “scanner” is someone that sits and reads through a book ala Barnes and Noble and they’d prefer you purchased it.
ETA it would appear I was wrong on both counts.

I believe there are people who go to used book sales and, using a specialized device (that’s probably been developed as a smartphone app by now), scan books’ barcodes, which then automatically do a database lookup on an average price for the book on reseller markets. If selling price < resale price, they buy the book and resell it for a profit.

Unless the bookstore is charging way above market, why would they care? Don’t they want to move their inventory? Am I missing something?


Scanners Live in Vain.

Most of the books are only $2.00 to begin with.

It is a used bookstore. People donate books to it and the store sells the books for a couple of bucks to support the library.

I’m really wondering if that’s the sort of scanner they mean, and how they could construe it to conflict with their non-profit community mission. It sounds like they’re unlikely to be undersold, so someone scanning for resale value is just a desirable customer.

I agree. What does it matter? Two Dollars from a “scanner user” or two dollars from a regular customer, the result is the same. More money for the library.

Scanners might clog up the aisles as they try to hit every book, where buyers just, uh, scan with their eyes, taking less time. Maybe.

If this practice of scanning used-book shelves is so popular than they’re clogging the aisles, that suggests that the local boosters should be cutting out these middlemen and raking in those profits directly for the library.

They’ve had bad experiences with exploding heads.

Just speculating, but could part of the mission of the non-profit community bookstore be to make reasonably-priced books available to members of the community, in addition to raising money for the library?

If they raise the prices to the level a bookstore in an upscale community might be able to command, would that cut out the people of more modest means who inhabit the local community? If arbitrageurs come in and wipe their shelves clean of any good values, leaving just the worthless trash on the shelves, would anyone from the community bother shopping there?

If their goal was solely to sell used books for a maximum price, rather than going to the trouble of running a retail book store, wouldn’t there be a more efficient way to move the books in bulk, either directly to the “scanners” or to the stores where the scanners were reselling their books?

If they care that much about making the titles available to the community at low cost, they should be putting them on the library shelves.

A device similar to a photocopier?
Well half a photocopier, it’s a photocopier without the printing bit.

The article gets into this. Some people think it’s a dishonorable thing to do, that one should own books to read them, not just to sell the valuable ones.

what, me preview?