The Bookstore of the Walled Garden

Seth Godin wrote about education and how it should change in a 30,000-word paper and wanted it to be readily available on Apple’s iBookstore. Too bad for him, though – Apple doesn’t want to accept it into their world…

I just found out that Apple is rejecting my new manifesto Stop Stealing Dreams and won’t carry it in their store because inside the manifesto are links to buy the books I mention in the bibliography. [...] Quoting here from their note to me, rejecting the book: “Multiple links to Amazon store. IE page 35, David Weinberger link.”

Nice. And just to make it clear – none of these links are to his own books and they’re links to hardcover books. Y’know – the kind that Apple doesn’t even sell.

Gruber argues that you wouldn’t see a brick-and-mortar bookstore sell a book with a competitor’s coupon inside. However, these aren’t coupons. They’re just links to the actual books. He even suggests making them iBookstore links instead of Amazon ones. Yeah, he wants Godin to make a special edition just for Apple. Y’know, because they’re so damn special.

Before it used to be “sell your software on this popular Apple product if you follow these long list of rules, build them on our own products that start at high prices, pay us $100 just to get started, and if we accept it we’ll allow you to enter into our pool”. Now we’re seeing a similar situation with books. So, if you’re on an iDevice and buy products from their iStores, you’re not only completely locked into their hardware, but are also being told what you can and can’t buy while they do it. Huh. Good thing I use Kindle.

And you simply have love the ironic name of the book: Stop Stealing Dreams.

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