Rowling has finally decided to release the Potter books as DRM-free ebooks
* and even physical bookstores
are freaking out. (They've been "banned from selling" the ebook editions. This is a problem, because, of course, brick-and-mortar stores sell so *many* ebooks now; this will be a major blow to them. WTF?) Publishers are quick to insist that this is not a game-changer
, not a major shift in publishing habits. (I'm with Wired: I think this is book publishing's Radiohead moment
.)Konrath is crowing
that he was right a year ago
when he said that authors, not publishers, would eventually destroy the publishing industry, if publishers didn't figure out what they actually had to offer
. The WSJ says that other authors could be inspired "to self-publish when their deals come up for renewal or demand higher royalty rates than the 25% of net sales that most publishers offer today on digital editions.
Aww. Authors might notice that they have the right to set the terms for their work. Publishers might have to figure out what they've got that's worth 75% of the sticker price for the life of the book (or the life of the author + 70 years, twitch). And we'll get to actually find out if the last several years' of unauthorized ebooks** prevent the legit ones from selling.
* Current info is that the ebooks will be watermarked somehow
, probably with buyer's name & either acct # or purchase order # like DriveThruRPG
; I assume this'll mean they're locked PDFs.
** If anyone didn't realize there are Harry Potter ebooks already, the rock you're using for an umbrella is too big.