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In the book Electronic Devices and Circuit Theory (10th edition) by Boylestad and Louis Nashelsky, I have found a technical mistake.

  • What can I do about this?
  • To whom should I send an email, the authors or the publisher? (Also, there is no email address mentioned in the book or on the Internet to which I can send my suggestions.)
  • I have never written an official email of this kind. If I should send an email, how should I write it?
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Boylestad was born in 1939. I doubt very much that he is going to read every email. You may want to check the other author or the publisher. I also doubt that an error(if it is) in a book in Electronic Devices and Circuit Theory is applicable in Chemistry. –  scaaahu Mar 23 at 6:22
    
Googling [book name] + "errata" is always a good place to start to see if they are already aware of the problem (and you might find other mistakes too). –  starsplusplus Mar 24 at 10:20

1 Answer 1

up vote 25 down vote accepted

First of all, see if the book has a newer edition, and try to look at a copy and see if it corrects the error.

If not, then try to find:

  • The publisher's web page for the book

  • The author's professional web page, which hopefully has some mention of the book.

  • An unofficial errata list (google the book's title and "errata" or "corrections").

Check in both places for an errata list, which may already have a correction of the error.

If not, then it is worth trying to report it. Writing the email is the easy part: just politely point out that you believe there is an error on page NNN, and explain as completely as possible why you believe it is incorrect. If you think you know how it could be corrected, you could explain that as well, but it isn't strictly necessary.

The hard part is figuring out where to send it; publishers and authors should make this obvious, but often they do not.

For a major established textbook (which I assume this is), I would focus on the publisher, since the original author may well not be actively involved with the book anymore. See if there is any contact or feedback information on the book's web page.

If you are a faculty member, the publisher probably has assigned a representative for your institution. You may get a better response by contacting your rep directly and asking them to forward your report to the appropriate person. If you are a student and this is your course text, you could ask your professor to contact the publisher's rep.

If there is an unofficial errata list, it should include contact information for the person who's maintaining it; send a report to them.

For a text or monograph with a smaller audience, you will probably do better to contact the author directly; look for contact info on their professional web page.

It's a good service to the community to report errors in books so they can eventually be fixed, so thanks for doing this. However, if the publisher/author make it a huge pain to do so, that is ultimately their problem. Make a reasonable effort to report it to an appropriate person, but if you don't succeed, there's no need for heroic efforts.

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Note, that if the author is not actively involved with the book anymore, there may be another expert on the subject who has taken over maintaining the book and who could a better person to contact than the publisher. –  Wrzlprmft Mar 23 at 9:37
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The International ed. of 11th revised ed. was published 23. July 2013. (I did not find an 12th ed) The error is still present, along with some antique explanations. –  Martin Mar 24 at 4:09
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@Martin: Oops, I was looking at a different book by the same author. –  Nate Eldredge Mar 24 at 5:11
    
Sir, I have sent an email (in this email I further asked for them, where I can report the error. I have not reported the actual technical error yet) to Mr. Amit Phadhak and the same email to schooleditorial@pearson.com. There are many email id's mention on Pearson's official website. I do not know at which email I should report. Could you link me to the page which mentions the particular email to which I should report. –  user31782 Mar 24 at 13:31
    
Recently I got their reply from schooleditorial@pearson.com . I think I did it correctly. Btw thanks for your answer. –  user31782 Mar 24 at 13:35

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