Ebooks and Apple

Just read Apple’s rather restrictive DRM clauses for budding ebook authors. Now, while I understand that Apple will want to make money if an author uses their services to make money, what I don’t understand is why anyone would accept that these services should be the only ones the author was allowed to use.

What if Microsoft had decided that you can only publish a book written using Microsoft Word through Microsoft? Do you think Word would have survived? Do you think books would have?

What if you write your ebook using Apple’s brave new software, submit it to them, and they reject it? Your book is going to be unusable because the tool and the format are both proprietary, and you will essentially have to recreate everything using some other tool, most likely one with very different features.

And that could happen very easily, considering how restrictive the people at Apple are regarding allowable content. Want to make a political satire? Forget it. Explicit, adult-only content? Forget it. A book exposing worker’s situation at electronics factories in China? Forget it. There is censorship at Apple, yet they want to take over  the publishing industry.

I’m all for new and exciting formats and ways to publish, but I cannot support something that essentially monopolises content creation and publishing.

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