Chrome’s library extension for Amazon

Coworker Liz does it again. I have long been a Mozilla Firefox user, but (gulp) am finally switching to Google Chrome for my internet browser, and here’s why: Chrome’s new Library Extension for Amazon.

The concept is this: when you look up a book on Amazon, you have the option – once you have this extension set up – to see at the same time whether that same book is available at your local library.* For instance (after buzzing right through Lost in a Good Book), I am looking for the third Thursday Next book by Jasper Fforde:
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And I would normally have two tabs open in my browser, so that I could search Amazon and my local library at the same time. But now:
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Look at that. My local HPL has me covered – and all in one browser tab. Thanks, HPL! And thanks, Google!

Now, it remains to be seen whether this will continue to fly for Amazon, an organization which likes its profits. If Amazon were to suspect any drop in business I imagine they’d find a way to keep libraries off their website. But we can hope – and enjoy it while we can.

*Once your local library is set up in the extension. Ours wasn’t, so Liz emailed “the guy” who does such things and the next day, there we were. So it might be just that easy – at least while the traffic remains manageable for “the guy”, which, I have no idea.

4 Responses

  1. this is a very curious app!
    I agree with your implied assumption that Amazon had nothing to do with this and might not be happy.

    Such extensions are often independent developments (like this one), especially in Google’s open-source world – but in fact, Amazon actually unwittingly encouraged this one! Here’s what the extension’s author says on their web page:
    “Library Extension is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com”
    That means Amazon is actually PAYING them for this! I wonder how long that will last?!!

    Could they really be so wise as to consider general encouragement of READING as “good for business”? Hmmm.
    But then, how many people will use it?

    What a great thing for libraries! They should be promoting it.

    • BTW: “the guy” who adds libraries for the extension is making $$ off of this – believe me, “he” will continue to be responsive to requests for additions!

      • “Could they really be so wise as to consider general encouragement of READING as ‘good for business’?” Ahhh, surely not!! The general bookstore/publishing world doesn’t seem to feel that amazon is a source of friendliness… but it’s definitely an interesting case to follow. Maybe everyone will have to find new ways of doing business – certainly they’re having to meet new circumstances.

        “But then, how many people will use it?” Also a good question. I fear, not many, yet. We’ll see if it catches on. Maybe I’m in the minority that is THRILLED by this – maybe amazon shoppers could care less about libraries!

        I’m a little unclear on the Associates earning program benefit to this extension – they’re not linking to amazon from anywhere??

  2. Ok, this is kind of cool. Tks for sharing.

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