I bought a "gently used" copy of the original version of Black Beauty by Danny Elfman. The disc is pristine but the case and insert have a slit cut into them. I can replace the jewel case but the insert still has a bit of a slit in it. Does anyone know the significance of this? I am not concerned, just curious.
A slit in the jewel case is referred to as a 'cut out' and usually indicates it was a clearance item. Often stock that's unsold after a while gets sent back and someone else who specializes in it comes along and buy all this unsold stock for cheap, and sells it for cheap. I believe the cut out is to, say, prevent someone from buying a disc for $2 and trying to go somewhere else and exchange it for a $16 disc.
(And note -- this is NOT the same as a hole punch in the barcode, which usually indicates a free copy given for review or similar circumstances. A lot of people lump these together, but they are unrelated)