Apple Cracking Textbook Racket

Apple Cracking Textbook Racket

John Seiler:

The biggest ripoff going is textbooks for K-12 and, even worse, college. I know some college kids who spend way more than $1,000 a year for required textbooks for their college classes.

Usually the texts are sub-par regurgitations of P.C. claptrap. And the professors who write the texts “update” them every couple of years, so you can’t buy a used copy.

Enter Apple.

According to Ars Technica, “Apple announced what it’s calling ‘iBooks 2’ during its media event in New York on Thursday, a textbook software program that allows textbook-makers and instructors to create rich, interactive teaching media for the iPad. As we first reported earlier this week, the announcement is akin to ‘GarageBand for e-books,’ giving authors access to easy-to-use tools on the computer in order to create multimedia content for the iPad.”

Steve Jobs lives!

Apple says the price will be no more than $14.99 for high-school books. It’s not clear what could be charged for college texts. But it’s unlikely anyone would be dumb enough to charge the $100 or more kids get stuck with nowadays.

This also will sharply cut costs for private, parochial and home schools.

And instead of kids schlepping around heavy textbooks, they can sprint carrying their iPads, weight 1.34 lbs.


The new iBooks also will be interactive. So instead of just reading about the Space Race of the 1950s and 1960s, students could read the text, then watch pictures of rockets taking off, such as the Apollo 11 launching; or listen to JFK’s moon shot speech.

Better yet, kids also will be able to download critiques of their textbooks. Imagine taking a sociology class and getting stuck with a textbook laden with the usual post-modern, deconstructionist, anti-Western, Marxist, anti-capitalist rubbish. But on your iPad, right next to the official text, is snarky commentary from some other student that you uploaded.

The monopoly on students’ thoughts has been broken. The cultural Marxist totalitarian Berlin Wall inside kids’ minds has been torn down.

How appropriate that, on the same day Apple announced this great new tool of liberation, Reuters reported, “Apple Inc’s quarterly results blew past Wall Street’s expectations as U.S. consumers snapped up near-record numbers of iPhones and iPads, sending its shares up 8 percent.”

The truth shall make you free. In color and with a soundtrack. With your iBooks 2.

Jan. 24, 2012



Write a comment
  1. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 24 January, 2012, 15:36

    So who buys the public school kids their Ipads??? The taxpayers @ $800 a crack??? Of course it means we would have to fund huge IT departments for the school system to maintain and repair the Ipads. How many Ipads will the average 8 or 9 year old go through in a school year??? 3???

    I bet the Apple lobbyists are swarming Sacramento and DC for new legislation outlawing books in schools.

    Reply this comment
  2. CalWatchdog
    CalWatchdog Author 24 January, 2012, 18:50

    Mr. B. Well it’s just a start. Soon we’ll have great $49 Android tablets that do the same thing.

    — John Seiler

    Reply this comment
  3. queeg
    queeg 24 January, 2012, 22:58

    Your missing the boat……royalties ala intellectual property….licenses.etc.

    The education/publishing kabal ain’t going down that easily…

    Reply this comment
  4. NormD
    NormD 25 January, 2012, 03:32

    Why is it conservatives have such a love affair with Apple?

    The company is run by committed liberals who sell overpriced products to semi-religious believers that lock you into a walled garden.

    Apple is getting into textbooks to make money and try to revive it failing iBooks platform. Why should Apple get 30%? For running the iTunes bookstore?

    Most of the cost of any book is not the printing. There is no reason to suspect the e-form of books should be substantially cheaper than paper. And lets not get started on the problems with DRMed books.

    Reply this comment
  5. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 25 January, 2012, 09:31

    Let’s not forget that socially conscious Apple outsources the manufacturing jobs needed to assemble their iPhones, iPads and iBooks to the sweatshops of China that pour raw chemical waste into the rivers and the atmosphere. In spite of using slave labor to assemble their products they continue to sell them to the stupid consumer at premium prices. Is that that kind of company we want to reward with a massive financial gateway into public education?

    Reply this comment
  6. Grover
    Grover 11 February, 2012, 12:13

    What I’d like to know is what’s to prevent the viral sharing of copyrighted materials? I design ESL materials. What’s to prevent some chain ESL school in China, say, from buying a single copy of my latest book for $5.99 then dishing it out to a thousand or more students in a single year, repeating the procedure year after year while the content is still current, popular and usable. I get $5.99 for all my efforts. Once! It’s pretty easy to find iBooks that have been ripped for download now when there are few iBooks on the market at all. An alternative approach: such schools could buy a number of iPads and rent them, preloaded with textbooks, to their students, creating a new revenue stream. At best, I get to sell a few iBooks. I can’t see any value in developing for such a platform.

    Reply this comment

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