Busting the College Textbook Monopoly

Why wasn’t Web 2.0 around when we were in school? We may go back just for the cheap books. From BuisnessWeek:

    Consider: How often does someone have the authority to order consumers to purchase a product with a limited number of vendors? University professors have just that power, requiring students to purchase particular books for their courses. The often obscure titles must typically be purchased from the college bookstore, which obtains them through special order. With limited competition, at best, prices for new textbooks can easily climb to $100, and have tripled since the mid 1980s

Oh man, stop. We’re having flashbacks.

    Now a group of small Web sites is trying to provide students with a cheaper alternative for textbooks and other school supplies, such as computers. The largest of the sites, http://www.chegg.com, has just received $2.2 million in funding, BusinessWeek.com has learned.

This sounds promising. Chegg lets students with university email addresses buy or sell their goods through “personal, face-to-face interactions–eliminating the hassle and costs of shipping and other fees that plague most used textbook-finding services.” Watch out evil campus bookstore.—MEGHANN MARCO

Web Sites Challenge the Textbook Goliaths [Business Week]
About Us [Chegg]