THURSDAY, DECEMBER 8, 2005
FROM PAGE 1
transition from student customer to
store merchant brought perspective
to the process.
“It’s an eye-opener knowing now
how the system works,” Saunders
said. “There are certain things we
can control, but we don’t have a lot
of control over what the publishers
are going to charge us. So that’s the
Most Chapel Hill vendors pay
students half the retail price for used
books that professors have requested
for the coming semester.
“If we know we can use the books
we’ll pay the students 50 percent
of the retail cost,” said John Jones,
director of Student Stores.
The retail prices sometimes are
determined by the publisher and
are based on the wholesale prices
that stores pay, \vhich usually fall
between 80 percent and 75 percent
of retail value, Jones said.
If publishers do not specify a retail
cost, Jones said stores generally will
print a price tag of 25 percent more
than what the store paid.
Textbook merchants say stu
dents often have the misconcep
tion that differences in prices
mean store owners are stuffing
their pockets with profits.
“It’s hard because students think
that it’s the bookstore that’s rip
ping them off, but it’s a lot of other
factors,” said John Lindo, store
manager at Tarheel Book Store, at
119 E. Franklin St.
One reason buybacks do not drive
up profits is because not all of the
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of different distributors.
People can use the light boxes
while sitting around watching
television or doing homework,
Hamrick said that at CAPS
they prescribe anti-depressants
and psychological therapy the
most often but do not hesitate
to help students engage in light
“Some people opt to use light
therapy,” he said. “We don’t have
the boxes, but we can help people
find them. I know a number of stu
dents who use them.”
Because of the geographical
location of Chapel Hill, cases of
SAD are less severe than they are
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books will be repurchased, said Steve
Thurston, manager of Ram Book &
Supply, at 306 W. Franklin St.
“It’s a good part of our business,
but it doesn’t directly affect prof
its,” Thurston said.
High prices have pushed some
students to alternative venues.
In 2003 UNC-CH alumni
Andrew Synowiez, a former staff
member of The Daily Tar Heel, and
Kevin Webb developed the textbook
trading Web site, www.carolinaswap.
com. Synowiez, who graduated in
May, said he and Webb started the
site because they were not satisfied
with their textbook experiences.
“We just felt like we weren’t get
ting our money’s worth,” he said.
Registration for Carolina Swap
is free, and the site gives student
vendors suggested prices based on
the listings on Amazon.com and at
Students searching for books
will be shown how many units are
available, and if they want to make
a purchase an e-mail will be sent to
each student seller. After that it’s
up to the students to decide the
nature of the transaction.
In its first semester, Synowiez
said, Carolina Swap saved students
SIO,OOO. Student government has
plans to help promote the site.
The textbook industry has attract
ed much recent attention as already
high prices continue to rise.
In November UNC-system
President-elect Erskine Bowles
expressed interest in creating text
book-rental programs across the sys
tem, similar to those at Appalachian
State University and other system
“People in the North where
the days get shorter would have
more trouble than schools farther
South,” Glick said, but she added
that there is not an overload of
cases at UMich.
She said it is important for stu
dents to recognize that this disor
der can be treated and that they
should get help.
Students need support from
professionals as well as a support
group of their peers to help them
get through the winter months,
“Depression can make it really
hard to function on a college cam
pus,” Glick said.
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Editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From Page One
schools. Students pay a fee to rent
textbooks for the semester.
Reasons for peaking prices vary.
“It used to be when anew edition
came out that edition would be good
for two to three years,” Lido said.
Now, he said, editions often are
good for only a year.
Supplemental materials, such as
access codes to online resources,
also keep students from buying
The access codes that come with
many science books only can be used
once, forcing students to buy new.
“It’s a huge problem in the
industry because it’s the way that
the publishers are keeping used
books (from) getting back into the
market,” Lido said.
Although the Chapel Hill ven
dors say online stores have not
negatively affected their profits,
the potential remains as the online
industry keeps spreading.
Richard Davies, spokesman
for Abebooks Inc. an online
book merchant based in Victoria,
British Columbia said textbooks
have become the largest industry in
“Used textbooks are the fastest
growing segment of the whole U.S.
publishing and book-selling indus
try,” he said.
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high enough for employees to
afford a living in Chapel Hill.
“What we have to do is contin
ue to work with the University to
make things better for staff,” said
Patterson, whose leadership will
be augmented by groundskeeper
David Brannigan, who was elected
Griffin’s years as forum chair
man were marked by a dedication
to expanding the role.
“I think Tommy Griffin’s legacy
is not just making it a larger player
but providing it with respectabil
ity by showing we can responsi
bly share the co-governance and
can responsibly come up with
ideas, .suggestions that make the
University better,” Patterson said.
As the forum moves on, leaders
are looking to further expand on
the foundation laid during the last
Patterson said forum leaders have
expressed interest in expanding the
committee structure to allow both
more participation and a broader
focus on employee issues.
The focus on a stronger voice
for employees is a continuation of
a recent trend within the forum.'
Forum bylaws were revised ear
lier this year to give voting power
to all members of the forum.
“This whole process will allow
“It’s hard because
students think that
it’s the bookstore
JOHN UNDO. BOOKSTORE OWNER
The company sells books
through professional vendors
who pay a fee to use the site. Last
January, Abebooks sold about $5
million worth of new and used
textbooks, Davies said.
International online distributors
also have jumped into the market,
often offering comparable content,
but with cheaper production.
Because the large market drives
prices down, Davies said the online
merchants keep prices level.
He said the U.S. textbook mar
ket will continue to hit students
hard as long as publishers have the
“They just don’t want to let go
because it’s unlike any other book
market in the U.S. —a captive audi
ence that keeps on coming back.”
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people to take ownership in the
responsibility they’ve accepted,”
Under Griffin’s tenure employees
were given a place before the UNC
Board ofTrustees. Time is now allot
ted during board meetings for com
ments from the forum chairman.
The forum also secured a
monthly meeting with the provost,
as well as administrators in finance
and human resources, and lobbying
legislators has become an avenue of
effecting change for the forum.
“We’ve carried our story to them
personally,” said Griffin. “If you
hear about somebody in a disaster
area, you say, ‘Well that’s real bad.’
But until you see that person ... it
hasn’t touched home.”
Patterson said the forum will con
tinue on the path forged by Griffin.
“We’ve done a wonderful job.
What’s the next step we can take?”
For example, he said, the forum
should take a look at the programs
implemented by the chancellor’s
task force for a better workplace,
which was founded in 2003 to pro
vide more benefits to employees.
“What we need to do is take a
look at that as a forum and figure
out how we want to work with the
administration and propose the
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FROM PAGE 1
He said that while it doesn’t need
rewriting, it does require attention.
For example, Title I, the Student
Constitution, and Title 111, the
judiciary section, call for differing
structures of the Student Supreme
Drew Erteschik, former chief
justice of the Court, said justices
have considered Title 111 to be the
“It has been governed by Title
111, but if nothing else it sort of
creates some confusion,” he said
of the discrepancy.
Kleinschmidt, on the other
hand, said Title I should serve as
the governing rule.
“Title I rules always. You cannot
have another provision conflict with
Title I, because every part of Title I
was voted on by the student body,”
he said. “The Student Congress act
ing alone cannot contradict the will
of the student body.”
Though not all Code issues are
as glaring, Riley said the quantity
of minor errors is a problem.
“There are just tons and tons of
clerical errors and inconsistencies
in format,” he said.
Earlier this semester Riley pro
posed congressional legislation to
create a constitutional convention
to review Title I.
He envisions students familiar
with the Code taking the opportu
nity to examine the document and
propose formal changes.
“The idea is to look at what
students really want, the direc
tion student government wants to
move and apply that to the Code
and see what would happen if that
were the case,” he said.
The convention proposal has
been tabled at least until January.
It would not be the first time
in recent years the Code has been
revised for inconsistencies.
Last year, then-Solicitor General
Matt Liles, now a UNC law student
and DTH columnist, undertook a
Code revision, but he said that it still
is in need of further assessment.
“I still believe that we passed a
reasonably wholesale revision to
make it cohesive last summer,” he
said. “(But) as we see this year, we
found even more places where the
Code is inconsistent.”
In addition to Riley’s focus on
revising Title I, there are other
movements under way to revise
specific sections of the Code.
The rules and judiciary committee
of Congress voted Hiesday to estab
lish a special session in January to
address revisions of Title VI, which
governs student elections.
Erteschik said he stepped down
from his duties as chief justice in
% Sailg (Ear Brel
November to be able to propose
changes to Title 111, which he was
not allowed to do under provisions
in the title that prohibit sitting jus
tices from amending the Code.
Because there is no single move
ment to comprehensively overhaul
the Code, Speaker Pro Tern Kris
Gould, District 6, said changes will
be easier to implement.
“There’s just more red tape and
obstacles in place when it’s a for
mal process,” he said. “I think it
can be an informal process.”
While Code revisions are being
addressed in Congress, members
emphasize that it is an important
issue for students to be aware of.
Kleinschmidt said students
might not realize how the Code
affects their lives at the University.
“Most students don’t think
about how the Code affects them
on a day-to-day basis,” he said. “Of
course it does. It’s really important
to determine how student fees are
Riley said he wants students
to “use Congress as a forum for
debate and not just as a tool for
His vision of a revised Code
would affect student funding.
“The Student Constitution
needs to be broader in scope so
that students are given more dis
cretion,” he said.
“Student Congress needs to fund
not only on permissibility, but what
we should do is say, “We are allowed
to fund your event, but we don’t like
your event so we won’t give you
money,’ or “We like your event, so
we’ll give you a little more money.’”
Riley said that while he is not
advocating discrimination against
campus groups, Congress should
use its representative powers to
reflect the student body’s opinion.
“We are representatives of the
student body,” he said. “I think that
we should reflect popular opinion
on campus to some extent.”
Regardless of how substantive
the revisions prove to be, Gould
said the process will be gradual.
“I don’t think it’s an issue of stop
ping everything now and working
on each change until the Code is
completely updated,” he said. “It
has to go through in phases.”
Kleinschmidt said he hopes
Congress bears in mind the impor
tance of its task.
“It’s almost a sacred document,”
he said. “I only hope that students
today recognize how important it
is to defining the culture of what
it means to be a student at the
University of North Carolina and
that they continue to protect the
integrity of the Code.”
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