Some people have a tendency to overreact and sadly the internet then hugely amplifies the volume of that overreaction and gives it a credence it doesn’t deserve.
Misunderstandings, hysteria and outright disinformation get repeated until they become inaccurate ‘truths’ that in turn get cited in defence of other inaccurate assertions.
The past few days have seen exaggerated squealing over Apple supposedly stopping authors from selling books wherever they like if they create a title using iBooks Author.
This isn’t what’s actually happening.
Not Kindles, Android tablets or any other device as yet unimagined.
Apple’s terms say the file created by iBooks Author – not the content it contains, the file – cannot be sold by any means other than the iBookstore.
Apple makes no claim on the content you create. The words, pictures, videos inside your book are yours. Always. Unless you give them to someone else.
But if you want to sell a Multi-Touch iBook made with iBooks Author you have to use Apple’s official iBookstore.
Because it’s an official Apple software package made available for the single purpose of distributing content via the iBookstore.
Authors are free to parcel up the same elements and sell them under the same name on any device they want.
They just can’t use Apple’s software to make content for Kindles and Android tablets or sell their iBooks Author file via any channel other than Apple’s official store.
And because iBooks Author just assembles content written, photographed and created outside of it, there’s no reason to use it to create an end file for other platforms in the first place.
Expecting to use iTunes Author to create products for other platforms is like expecting iTunes Publisher to upload to Amazon’s Kindle store.
It’s not that hard to understand.
Anyone who doesn’t want to agree to Apple’s terms is free to use a different software package to create books for iBooks and any other device they see fit to distribute it on.
They can exercise this choice because Apple hasn’t hidden the requirement to sell books via its store from users. It’s very clearly stated on the Mac App Store download page for iBooks Author:
But it seems some people haven’t bothered to read it or have misunderstood what it actually means.
They’ve then taken to shouting down anyone who dares try and correct their misunderstanding.