Apparently, Mass Markets should still only be sold on racks in supermarkets as impulse buys, and Trades deserve all the display space on proper shelves in real bookstores. And if you're seen in public reading, well, the Times leaves no doubt which type you'd best be holding with this little tidbit:
A trade paperback, in short, is the book you’d want to be reading if you were sitting at Les Deux Magots and Simone de Beauvoir was looking straight at you.
Considering she's been dead for more than two decades I'd be rather more interested in discovering whether or not she was a zombie than whether or not the printed version of the book I'm reading is up to snuff. I'm not sure what the punishment would be otherwise but it must involve some inner circle social ridicule, whereby I am to be ostracized for life, and banned from Paris, respectively.
Which is fine by me actually.
Anyway, here's the article.
NY Times, Paperback Row (in which they explain the difference between the Trade and Mass Market Paperback)
At least they do get around to simply pointing out that a Trade Paperback is larger than the Mass Market Paperback. Though, from reading the article the artsy black and white cover of the Trade is supposed to appeal to those who prefer literature and the shiny color cover of the Mass Market is there to trick the genre reading masses into reading real literature. No matter the origins of each style that this article in today's day and age is still looking down its nose at a Mass Market copy of the same exact book is utterly infantile.