Thursday, February 19, 2009

Textbook Economics

So, there's an interesting issue being discussed in the Diamondback.

Apparently, student activists are up in arms about the high price of textbooks and are working on trying to find ways to lower them. Some of these methods include:

- Mandating that professors allow older editions of textbooks or justify why they need the new editions.
- Post the ISBN numbers for textbooks so that students can comparison-shop online.
- Posting the book lists earlier so that people have more time to shop around.

There is only one slight problem. If students can comparison-shop, then more of them will buy their textbooks at places other than the University Book Center. And since profit from the University Book Center is used to run the Student Union and pay off the debt from its construction, if UBC profit decreases then student fees will have to go up in order to make up the money.

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