Monday, January 23, 2012

The Apple De-Evolution

Apple made their announcement Thursday regarding their dedication to education, and to that end, their creation of iBook Author. Lots of folks have commented much more thoroughly on the subject of Apple's asinine End User License Agreement, especially over at The Passive Voice.

Yet, someone I know, who's normally a very savvy businessperson, said, "I don't understand the big deal. Apple created iBook Author. They should get to say how it's used."

Um, no. Let me put this more simply.

Let's say you are a carpenter. You build birdhouses for a living. In fact, you have a reputation making the coolest birdhouses ever.

You need a new drill. Black & Decker** comes along and says, "Hey! We'll give you a drill for free. But you must sell your birdhouses through us, and only us, and we get 30% of the retail price you charge. The only way you don't have to pay us is if you give away your birdhouses for free."

Or you can pay Craftsman $100 for a new drill, and sell your birdhouses at all the cute, little boutiques, all the garden centers, and the flea market down the street for whatever agreement you make with each retail store.

In the long run, which way expands your distribution channel? Which way gives more people the opportunity to see and buy your birdhouses? Which way will make you more money?

Get the difference, now?

** No offense to the good folks at Black & Decker. They make fine tools, and to the best of my knowledge, their legal department has a clue.


  1. All I can say to this is that I love Black & Decker too! Anything else will sound snarky and ugly and I try to never be that way publicly.

  2. Tess, I'm just tired of the exclusivity crap the retail outlets are trying to nail writers with.

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