Monday, February 01, 2010

eBook War

Anyone else entertained by the firefight that occured this week? Mostly spurred on by our friends at Apple introducing the iPad you have a book publisher (Macmillan) that choose to try and strongarm Amazon to increase the list price for their books (from 9.99 to 14.99, a direction that I abhore) because that is what Apple was going to list stuff for (for their reader software on the iPad). So Amazon simply chooses to delist all McMillan's books (something like 1/6 of their inventory).

And then the authors get involved....

Now I get it, the traditional contract for authors is based on gross sales (yes, I know it is more complicated than that). But ebooks simply cost a lot less to produce and distribute.

Of course I find myself torn to be on the side of a retailor that is incorporating DRM into everything they sell (ebook-wise.... oddly I choose Amazon for MP3's since those are not DRM'd). But really? $15 for an ebook? That I cannot lend to a friend, prop in my bookcase, resell or even technically own (and what if the retailer goes away? DRM pisses me off). I like the authors and I kind of sympathize with them, but there is a world of distance between and ebook (now, DRM'd and all) and a physical book.

Now I feel the urge to go buy some non-DRM'd books. Thank god Baen (my favorite SF publisher) sells them direct to me at a really reasonable price.

Full disclosure? I own a Kindle 2 and if I ever do by an iPad, it will not be a first gen one....

1 comment:

Kristin said...

It's a good thing I prefer actual books, the weight, the smell, the everything. It's too much for me.