What do these books have in common?
They all came up in a search on Lulu.com for the very specific title of my Telecom Reference eBook. I uploaded it a while ago as a test, and with the pathetic hope of selling a few copies.
The wacky search suggestions included:
- Professional Helicopter Pilot Studies
- Gay Girls in Dresses
- How to Study and Interpret the Holy Bible
- Sacred Geometry Design Sourcebook
- Epic Role Playing Game Manual
- Dragon's Den
- Resurrection of the Hellcat
- Thinking Skinny Ebook
- Passion X:
- Film Dollies, Cranes, & Camera Stands
- Disciplinary Dialogues
- ...and more irrelevant crap.
I previously posted that if Miss Lulu thought these books are the right books, I would not trust her to bring me a roll of toilet paper when I am in need.
Lulu's search technology was pathetic. A search for my exact title brought up 5,685 results -- of which only one was the right one.
A search for my exact name brought up 8,246 results -- of which only one was the right one.
One time, the right one was buried so far down that I never found it.
The next day, it was the very first one.
The second time I searched on that day, there were 5,256 results (nearly 3,000 names disappeared from Lulu in less than a minute!), and my name was once again buried deeply among some absolutely absurd search results.
Since my name was not displayed on the first screen, I clicked to see the second screen and got this cheerful message: "Sorry, your search did not match any of the interesting content on Lulu. Suggestion: Make sure all words are spelled correctly, also try different or more general keywords."
The most interesting content on Lulu might be a book that no one can find.
Authors' names that came up in a search for "Michael N. Marcus" include "Michael Winkler," "Sebastian Michael," "Raymond McMahon," "David Nutter," "Bétina Daquin," and "Mary-Barbara Doloris" -- BUT NOT MY NAME!
I then tried to make the search even more specific than by using my exact title or exact author's name. I put the search term within quotation marks -- the normal way to enhance searching. I got ZERO results. The brain-dead search system thought that the quote marks were part of the search terms.
I am not making this up. No one could make this up.
Lulu boss Bob Young said, “We publish a huge number of really bad books” and “We’re not trying to get books to a mass market."
AND NOW FOR THE GOOD NEWS:
Lulu's search system now works just fine -- at least for my own book titles and name. Lulu's printing prices, however, are still so high that it would be tough to make a profit on books Lulu prints. CreateSpace or Lightning Source are better choices.