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Cheatsheet, without the affiliate links (another commenter posted these with affiliate links then deleted it after being called out):

The Road to Character, David Brooks - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/081299325X

Thing Explainer, Randall Munroe - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0544668251

Being Nixon: A Man Divided, Evan Thomas - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0812995368

Sustainable Materials With Both Eyes Open, Julian Allwood - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/190686005X

Eradication: Ridding the World of Diseases Forever?, Nancy Leys Stepan - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0801450586

Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol Dweck - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0345472322

Honorable Mention:

The Vital Question: Energy, Evolution, and the Origins of Complex Life, Nick Lane - http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393088812

Nothing wrong with affiliate links if you're a regular user of this site: we're capitalists here. I make sure to include them if I link to a book, because I could use the money more than Jeff Bezos. Of course, I don't link to stuff just for the sake of linking to it, but only do so if I would have anyway. I think it's pretty clear whether someone is a spammer or not.

https://news.ycombinator.com/user?id=hullo seems to be the person who included some links. They have clearly been here a while, participates constructively, and doesn't seem to spew out a lot of affiliate links (any, actually, that I can see).

Perhaps, but taking a famous person's list of books and reposting it with affiliate links and no disclaimer is definitely crossing the line in my book.

Don't think I might have upvoted it, but it does represent a minor convenience.

Why? I'm genuinely interesting in your line of reasoning.

Profiteering in comment sections pollutes the incentives for commenters. Sure the links were useful, but they were much less useful than a person providing a really insightful comment about a typical article that shows up here. I don't want one person making monetary gain over another.

If only there was a system where we could somehow crowdsource deciding which comments are "really insightful" and which are not...

> I don't want one person making monetary gain over another.

Seems like that shipped sailed a long time ago: there are a lot of people who link to their companies, offer jobs, and that kind of thing here. Making money is not a bad thing - spamming is.

If anyone's interested, I hereby offer to spend the entirety of my ill-gotten affiliate gains on beers if anyone ever visits Bend, Oregon.

I suppose some think there is an opportunity for disingenuous posting if there is monetary gain to be had. That said, I agree with you, and knowing I have posted affiliate links without trying, I think any malice attributed to it is misplaced.

With affiliate links, I sometimes make upwards of 10 dollars every few months - enough for a free book once in a while. I'll let you guess how that compares to my salary...

I think it's pretty clear from people's posting/comment history whether they're adding them in good faith or not.

Affiliate links? Like, Bill Gates gets some money when you click through his blog? Please tel me I'm misunderstanding.

No, another commenter posted links but slapped affiliate tags on them.

There are actually no direct links to Amazon (or other similar sites) in his blog posts. Parent meant other commentators in this thread.

Just to mention - you can read 'Sustainable Materials with Both Eyes Open' on the authors' website (although I'm sure they wouldn't mind people buying it on Amazon as well). http://www.withbotheyesopen.com/read.php

I'm curious, why is it that people dislike affiliate-backed links if the link is relevant, useful, interesting and of equal quality to the normal link? Seems irrational.

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