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The Better World Shopping Guide - 2nd Edition: Every Dollar Makes a Difference Paperback – October 1, 2008

4.6 out of 5 stars 58 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

While we generally try to make our vote count every four years, few of us realize that our most immediate power to shape the world is being squandered on a daily basis. Every dollar we spend has the potential to create social and environmental change. In fact, it already has. The world that exists today is in large part a result of how our purchasing decisions have already shaped it.

The Better World Shopping Guide rates hundreds of products and services from A to F so you can quickly tell the "good guys" from the "bad guys" and ensure your money is not supporting corporations who make their decisions based solely on the bottom line. Drawing on decades of meticulous research, this completely revised and updated fifth edition will help you find out who actually "walks the talk" when it comes to:

  • Environmental sustainability
  • Human rights
  • Community involvement
  • Animal protection
  • Social justice.

Small enough to fit in a back pocket or handbag, and organized in a user-friendly format, The Better World Shopping Guide will help you reward the companies who are doing good, penalize those involved in destructive activities, and change the world as you shop!

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

Ellis Jones has been teaching people to make a difference in the world for over a decade with works like The Better World Handbook. A scholar of social responsibility, change and activism, he founded and directs the Better World Network.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 184 pages
  • Publisher: New Society Publishers; 2nd edition (October 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0865716307
  • ISBN-13: 978-0865716308
  • Product Dimensions: 4.1 x 0.5 x 6.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,790,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have to admit I'm feeling a little bit evil and trecherous for not giving such a great book and excellent concept a five-star review, but I will explain.

I am a long-time vegetarian and long-time environmentalist. I have been following Dr. Jones' "vote with your wallet" concept for many, many years (more than I care to admit), and I firmly believe that our voice is most greatly amplified when we speak daily from our role as consumer.

The GREAT thing about this book is that it is a concise, easy-to-carry, easy-to-consult-on-the-fly score card for most everything you might want to buy, from just about every company you can buy it from, and even from most of the places you'd be buying it. If you're already a well-informed green shopper and you have some experience with the politics of responsible consumption, then this is, indeed, a five-star book.

The downside to the book is that in order to make it a "pocket guide," it contains very little background information or explanation for why a particular company received the score they did. If you're new to the concept and find lots of your favorite products are getting Ds and Fs, then you are left almost on your own to find out why. (Of course, I'm all for doing your own research!) There are SOME explanations, but it's just not possible to detail the myriad reasons for corporate irresponsibility in a 177-page pocket-sized book.

There IS a web site for the book, but I don't think it's been updated for the second edition of the book, and it has very limited functionality. There is no search function, for example, and if there are details about specific company scores, I couldn't find them.

An example: I need some new pajamas.
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Format: Paperback
I devoured the Better World Handbook and purchased the Better World Shopper without thinking twice about it. While I knew it was compact (for portability's sake) I am a bit disappointed that there is no additional information on each company reviewed. I was under the impression you could go to the website and see more of the authors research to make better informed decisions. For example, exactly does Morningstar Farms receive such a bad grade? The reader is not informed of the details, the author simply "graded" the company based on his (admittedly thorough) scale and the reader is supposed to trust it's accuracy. Other than that, this is very helpful. If you do not want to know details, this is the book for you.
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By CJK on October 12, 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Great book. My granddaughter introduced me to this. Shop and vote with your dollars. Buy products from companies that really care about the environment, people and...oh yea...the earth. Such a concept.
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If you want to make a difference in your own small way...buy this book. It will give you the best banks, products, etc. that are good for the earth and good to their employees. I'm choosing these instead of the "corporate villains" listed. This is the second edition I've purchased over the years. I've given it to my kids and friends as gifts.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is comprehensive guide about our shopping choices. An excellent resource for people that want to make a difference on a daily basis. Gives perspective on the power that consumers have in our environment and the world's resources.
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Format: Paperback
This is an awesome book. I cannot recommend it enough. If used, it can be world-changing. No matter if you consider yourself a hardcore activist (myself) or just someone who is more socially-conscious this book and its extremely low price (buy through the [...] website) and free shipping will repay itself in multiple dividends every day it is used.

This book will change the way you shop forever and will make you feel great about yourself and what you are doing for the world in the process. This is a book to be shared and shared again. Read it cover to cover, definitely check out the website, and then carry it with you everywhere you go (do not worry it small enough to fit into a pants pocket).
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The Better World Shopping Guide is concise, well-organized, and beyond useful. It's a good size to carry around with you and really helps you out when you're shopping, regardless of how specific the item you might be buying is.
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Format: Paperback
Someone gave me this book and once I started flipping through the pages and seeing ratings about products I have bought and buy on a daily basis in some cases, it completely opened me up to how important our shopping dollar is. We essentially are enabling companies with our hard-earned money to invest in either a positive direction or a negative one for our world's future.

I like how the ratings are based not only on environmental bases, but social and ethical as well. The guide is so easy to use, I literally double check most products I buy before making my purchases - gas, electronics, food, etc. The book has a great set of intro pages that highlight the best and the worst companies, and how the A-F rating scale works.

The book feels like one of the most important and useful guides you could have on hand on a day-to-day level. I hope to see the author continue his journey of keeping businesses in check, and I also hope to see more research continue to be done in this arena. Would love to see an iPhone App for this type of info as well!
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