Tor Books DRM Free. Whither Author?
As announced today, Tor Books will go DRM free. This means all eBooks available from Tor will be convertible among formats. How far that goes, and how significant it will be, is unclear to me since my books (and most others) end up on Torrents anyhow, but it’s a symbolic step in the direction of modernizing the book market, along the lines we discussed earlier.
For the serious future, I still argue that the ultimate “monopoly” is the (supposed) author. In the future–what will an author be? If a publisher or a distributor cannot maintain a monopoly, how can an author?
Suppose a book published by Chris Author is totally open–to editing.
What’s to stop any fan from “improving” on it, then offering the improved version for sale? For a dollar a download? Or pennies, or nothing?
Suppose it’s actually a better book? A lot of people think they could improve on Thrones. What if someone’s right? What if an improving fan’s version convinces the public it’s better than the original?
The future of the Author is in grave doubt.
Read this, from the digitizers to see what I mean. If it’s not “true” yet, it will be soon.