[free-sklyarov] (no subject)

Julian T. J. Midgley jtjm at xenoclast.org
Tue Aug 7 19:27:24 PDT 2001

On Wed, 8 Aug 2001, Tom wrote:

> On Tue, Aug 07, 2001 at 05:16:19PM -0400, Chuck Mead wrote:
> > MetaTexts Listed by the Instructor:
> >
> > The Declaration of Independence of the United States of America
> > Jefferson, Thomas
> > Project Gutenberg, ISBN0585099979, free/180 days
> [...]
> > Anybody besides me see the humor here?
> no. this isn't funny anymore.

No, it really isn't.

So, why exactly would I pay anything at all for time-limited rights to a
book that I could borrow for free from the library, or buy myself and lend
to whomever I liked (or in the case of the various Gutenberg texts they
are hawking, copy and distribute to anyone I liked)?  It would seem
natural that the cost of the 6 month licence would be some minute fraction
of the cost of buying the paper version of the book, since it costs them
next to nothing to distribute (compared to printing and binding costs), it
self-destructs, and I'm not even allowed to lend it to a friend, wouldn't

But, no:

To choose an example at random:

Business Law: Ethical, International and E-Commerce Environment by Henry
R. Cheeseman

(Have the guys at Metatext had their sense of irony removed, or what?)

Amazon will sell me this this new in hardback for $119.67, or secondhand
for $80.


Alternatively, I could take up the very generous offer of a 180 day
licence from Metatext for the princely sum of $89.52.  Nothing like a good
bargain, is there?


This is just sickening.  So much so that I've just registered
"boycottmetatext.com", and it's going free to anyone who has the time to
organise a boycott campaign against them (as someone else has already
suggested, aggressive leafletting in any university that's been fool
enough to sign up for their scam would be a good start).

I can transfer the domain completely or point the domain wherever you like
and provide free hosting if necessary (although my machine's in the UK, so
it probably makes sense to host on a box in the States instead).  I would
do it myself, but I'm not exactly local, and am too busy organising the UK
protests at the moment.

Just drop me an email at jtjm at xenoclast.org, and it's all yours.

To avoid diluting messages, it might sensible to wait until Dmitry is free
before starting the boycott Metatext campaign, although I'll leave any
decision on that to consensus.


Julian T. J. Midgley                    http://www.xenoclast.org
Cambridge, England.                       PGP Key ID: 0xBCC7863F
UK Free Dmitry Protest:              http://uk.freesklyarov.org/

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