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Study: 75% of Secondhand Books are Microsoft Manuals

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FRANKLIN, IN — A study released this week by TFSM Research Partners points to a surprising finding–three out of every four used books for sale are technical product manuals published by Microsoft. The study surveyed more than 2,000 stores and online retailers, finding that inventory is at an all-time high.

“We can’t give them away,” says Rick Wiseman, merchandiser at one of Franklin’s three Salvation Army locations. “Danielle Steel novels go faster,” adds Wiseman. “Say you’re going to the beach, a technical manual isn’t making it in your carryon.”

Since the books aren’t tax deductible due to overstock, some thrifty consumers are turning to e-commerce sites like Amazon or Barnes & Noble to sell their support manuals online. What’s more, these books are in mint condition.

Listed as “Used-Like New,” sellers defend the “used” status at all with comments like “dusty, but in perfect condition” “slight corner wear from shelf life” and “never even unwrapped!“

With over 400 copies available of most manuals, listings start at $0.01 each and sellers are even offering to cover the $3.99 shipping charge. Translation: people are willing to pay to get rid of their manuals.

The software giant is only making matters worse by constantly printing new editions, trying to keep up with their regular Office updates and bug fixes. With all of the changes to the suite of products, why don’t users read the provided how-to’s?

“It’s like asking for directions,” one woman’s husband says, “It just seems wrong.”

Microsoft declined to comment.

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