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Chris Anderson knows a thing or two about self-promotion. His first book, The Long Tail, caused a stir three years ago in its suggestion that the internet was creating a golden age for niche retailers. His latest work, Free: the Future of a Radical Price (which like The Long Tail began as a Wired article and was developed on Anderson’s blog) makes an equally sweeping claim – to plug the gap in economic thought that arises from the disappearance of prices.

However, in…

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