Back in September, the mega-auction site eBay put restrictions on the sale of teacher manuals.
Pittsburgh Tribune Review, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 13 September 2006, Site’s policy hits home
Beamer and other home-schooling parents are upset by an eBay policy barring the sale of teacher’s edition textbooks — which include answer keys — on its popular auction site. The action, taken earlier this year, just came to the attention of many home-schooling parents as they tried to sell textbooks on the site as the school year began.
What has happened since then?Â How have homeschooling parents who relied on eBay adjusted to the change?
Business Opportunities Weblog, Central California, 3 September 2006, Home School Group Has Answer for eBayâ€™s Textbook Ban
So, in a few weeks, the home-schooling advocate says, HSLDA will begin providing an alternative to eBay for its members. This is a welcome solution for home-schooling families, many of whom were troubled to learn of eBayâ€™s new policy, he observes.
The problem with HSLDA’s solution, is that it is members-only, which is fine for HSLDA members, but they constitute perhaps 4% of American homeschooling families (based on a rough estimate of 80,000 member families contrasted with a ballpark of 2 million homeschooling families — my meagre math skills can deal with those numbers which involves mostly canceling zeroes).Â Reducing the number of homeschooling families in the country to one million only brings the percentage up to a charitableÂ 10%.Â (now I’m practicing rounding off)Â That leaves our a lot of people, so the HSLDA-solution, while helpful to a few, still leaves the majority out in the cold.
So are there other sources for used books?
Yes.Â Other sites show up in a search for outlets.Â
Buyer be aware, though.Â I merely searched, I did not buy.Â
Also, Half.com isÂ affiliated with eBay, so the policies are the same.Â
Items that cannot be listed on either eBay or Half.com:
instructor solutions manuals
review copies of textbooks
annotated instructor’s edition
When you find a new vendor, start small, andÂ don’t spend more on purchases than you can afford to write off as a learning experience. Â As you gain confidence in a vendor, then make more ambitious purchases.
Homeschooling Used Curriculum Sites (a collection of sites andÂ information)
Other outlets include local groups.Â In my pre-Internet homeschooling days, our support group sponsored a yearly book-swap/sale.Â We also ran ads in the group newsletter.
There are ways to find, and ‘recycle,’ books and materials for home ed.Â Just be persistent and imaginative in your search,Â and remember:Â Buyer be aware.