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Comment First Steps (Score 5, Insightful) 130

This is only partially about cornering the eBook market (or should I say peripherally). The Amazon Prime lending library's main drawback is the lack of established authors and more current works. I'm just betting this is a trial program to test the waters. Mr. Bezos' next step will be to extend such an offer to a big name author. Ultimately, I believe his goal is to essentially dismantle the existing infrastructure of publishers and agents, with Amazon, of course, being the corporate entity to jump in and allow authors more or less direct access to the market without those middlemen taking a cut. In the short term, I like this plan. Any time a layer of middlemen can be eliminated it is simply a matter of the market making a process more efficient, which is a good thing, both for authors (less cuts out of their royalties) and for Amazon (larger pool of renowned authors). The issue is the long term implication. If this process leads to all authors being locked into a proprietary tech, that is bad. So, in short, authors should be happy, but tread carefully and be sure to be aware of what the motives are for these moves. If handled carefully, authors can still win this battle in the long term - they have the truly irreplaceable commodity here, their words.

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