iBook Author Controversy

        Apple is getting some bad publicity over the iBook Author program.  Jim Hamm sends this article from Ed Bott of ZDNet, who details some questionable conditions and calls it "greedy and evil license agreement."  Jim comments, "I usually support Apple in its closed-loop system, but not this time. I think authors will just bypass this program. If I'm missing something in this scenario, let me know if you would."  Stay tuned for more on this hot topic.
        This just in from Allen Laudenslager, "What I've read is that Apple is giving away the software to create iBooks BUT if you use it for commercial purposes (i.e. write a book and the sell copies) you have to pay Apple. If you give away the book then you don't have to pay.  Not a bad marketing tool when their goal is cheaper and better textbooks written by the teachers themselves."
        Entering into the discussion now is John Carter.  Here's his view.  "The new app called iBooks Author is available FREE in the App Store.
        "If Apple wants a piece of the pie for books created and published with this app regardless of where the book is published, I think that’s a good tradeoff for providing such a fabulous app.
        "Apple is making available thousands of free educational material through iTunes U. Most of that material is provided solely by the creator without any regard to providing a consistent experience to readers regardless of the source or topic, and most of it is entirely video in nature.
        "The whole purpose of iBooks Author is allow educators to create interactive textbooks intended to be viewed on an iPad, although it can be used to create an iBook for any purpose for any audience. This is a new educational outreach for Apple. In order to sustain this effort, funding must come from somewhere. If Apple were to depend on corporate, public, or private contributions in order to allow the creator to publish outside the Apple domain without some kind of remuneration then they would also have to make sure that iBooks Author would work on any platform. Keeping it in-house is a way to ensure that conformance with Apple standards are maintained so that the quality and experience that comes out of the iBook is consistent.
        John closes with this observation, "A consistent user experience of all apps across all Apple products is almost a trademark of Apple."