We are pretty use to the crap that the RIAA and the MPAA like to spread around like fresh manure on a cow field but as of this week they have been joined by yet another trade organization that proves just how far out in left field they idiots are when it come to protecting their little fiefdoms. Yes the trade organizations for authors; the Authors Guild, has proven just how little they understand technology, the Internet and copyright in this day and age.
John Paczkowski quotes from a press release from the Guild in a post today
“[The Kindle’s text-to-speech function] presents a significant challenge to the publishing industry,” the group said in a statement released Thursday. “Audiobooks surpassed $1 billion in sales in 2007; e-book sales are just a small fraction of that. While the audio quality of the Kindle 2, judging from Amazon’s promotional materials, is best described as serviceable, it’s far better than the text-to-speech audio of just a few years ago. We expect this software to improve rapidly….we recommend that if you haven’t yet granted your e-book rights to backlist or other titles, this isn’t the time to start. If you have a new book contract and are negotiating your e-book rights, make sure Amazon’s use of those rights is part of the dialog. Publishers certainly could contractually prohibit Amazon from adding audio functionality to its e-books without authorization, and Amazon could comply by adding a software tag that would prohibit its machine from creating an audio version of a book unless Amazon has acquired the appropriate rights. Until this issue is worked out, Amazon may be undermining your audio market as it exploits your e-books.”
What it boils down to is that his Guild; which is suppose to be acting on behalf of it’s member authors, says that by creating an audio version of a book you are in fact creating a whole new product that is totally based on a copyrighted book. In other reports on this the Guild has even gone to the point of suggesting that any verbal or audio reproduction of a book is and infringement on a copyright and there for illegal.
As nuts as it might sound, a parent reading a bedtime story to their kids would fall under the Authors Guild classification of breaking a copyright and therefore subject to criminal prosecution. You just couldn’t make this type of bullshit up but somehow I am not the least bit surprised. I’m just flabbergasted that more of an uproar hasn’t happened over this.
In my opinion these Author Guild jerk offs should return to the rocks they crawled out from under and quit trying to come up with harebrained ideas that will only hurt the actuall authors they say that they represent.