HolidayBuyer's Guide

The latest social network: books

The oldest forms of media may finally be establishing themselves in the Web 2.0 landscape. has just entered the book-trading realm yesterday, but we're not entirely sure if it's the most recent contender because sites like this appear to be popping up all the time.

Just last month, for example, Rafe Needleman Swaptree, another site that allows people to swap books, as well as DVDs and other media. Like WhatsOnMyBookshelf, Swaptree is supposed to launch in July.

A key difference between the two sites is the use of a credit or point system, which WhatsOnMyBookshelf employs and Swaptree does not. The distinction is either good or bad, depending on your view: Points and other forms of currency allow more flexibility, but Swaptree's person-to-person system makes it more appealing to some.

As far as we're concerned, the operational differences aren't all that important. We're just happy we have a way to clear out dust-gathering shelves and getting a new incentive to read more along the way.