So yesterday, when I was writing about Bill Buxton’s new book, I went to Amazon.com, thinking I’d grab a picture of the cover of the book, and as a thank you to Amazon.com have the image of the book cover link to their site. So, I started doing the same old rigamarole of saving the book cover graphic, opening it in Photoshop to tweak it (resize it, remove the gray background inserted by Amazon, etc.) and then I thought “wait, why I am I sitting here preparing a graphic that already exists on the web? Why not just point to that graphic?” So, I went back to the Amazon site and viewed the page source and trawled around to find the url for the image. And I’m sure if I had tooled around enough in the page source, I would have been able to find the right link, but after a while, I simply decided this wasn’t worth my time. At some point, while all this was happening, someone sent me a link to a video on YouTube (yes, it was another completely ridiculous but funny YouTube video, and no I won’t tell you what it was), so I went to watch it, but found myself instead staring at YouTube Embed/URL feature and wondering why in the world Amazon doesn’t add this to their site. Y’know something like this…
Let’s see what all the possible advantages might be of this feature:
- Authors of the book can easily promote it on their site, and the embedded content could include optional sales info or ratings info or whatever.
- People who have reviewed the book on Amazon’s site can display a snippet of their review on their website. Users who want to read the rest of the review would be taken to the Amazon site.
- Bloggers, like me, who want to write about a book could easily display a book cover (and maybe optional features like the search inside link in their blog entries.
So why hasn’t Amazon done this? Is there some legal reason that prevents it? Do they already have the feature but I just wasn’t able to track it down?