This morning, I woke up to the excellent discovery that my issue with Amazon search is fixed. The correct edition is pulling up first in search. This is good news for me.
But, before ringing the bells and calling this issue done, I clicked around to some other titles, and discovered that only mine was resolved. No other titles seem to be fixed, by other authors.
New Editions of texts should appear first in search. The latest edition should be the first. It doesn’t matter whether both issues are out of print, or if one was published a month ago, and the second published a month after. There are lots of reasons why new editions happen, and these are all good reasons why the newest edition should be given primacy in search placement at the largest bookstore in the world.
I am very grateful that my issue is resolved, and a huge thanks goes out to SFSignal, Jaym Gates, and Lee Martindale, as well as the folks who commented and agreed to write to Amazon about this issue.
Scholars amongst you, as well as web-savvy folks, can probably quickly grasp why new editions should appear first in search, and be given prime placement. Once there, clicking through to remaindered or older editions is a fine and dandy thing, and is not to be discouraged at all. No one has any problem that used or remaindered books are being sold at a discount. They should not, however, be first in search.
Keep making noise?
I know this is hardly an injustice on par with the terrible disappearance of GLBT books that happened a while back, but it’s something that matters. It impacts scholars, readers, authors, and publishers. It’s a very quiet sort of disappearing act, that impacts the way books are read and what books succeed in their reprinting.