Webscabs

Found an article on Techdirt talking about a blog replication of an e-mail from the Science fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) vice-president, Howard V. Hendrix. The short of it is, Mr. Hendrix seems to think writers shouldn’t be allowed to publish what they want, where they want, and charge as little as they like. Because it upsets his union. Now once upon a time, unions came into existence to protect workers from unprincipled and downright ruthless employers. Because government, apparently, wouldn’t do that job. Times of course have changed. Mr. Hendrix here is attacking not a publishing house, but other writers, for the act of trying to get their stories read. He puts forth the idea that if you or I put a story online for free, it hurts him. I submit in return that it only hurts him if his stories aren’t worth paying for. The price of books, in case nobody has noticed, has grown huge in recent years to double (or so) what I paid when I was in school. That’s not the sign of an industry that’s hurting for consumers. These so-called webscabs are simply people who are trying to find an audience. It’s good for readers. It’s good for writers. It’s only bad for unions and publishers. (Although Baen books seems to think it works well for them!)

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  • […] Stained Techno Peasant day tomorrow in response to the Hendrix “webscabs” comment I recently blogged about. I’m looking forward to seeing all of that. I also attended Making The Most Of The Web, which […]

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