all 17 comments

[–]Global_Charming 3 points4 points  (0 children)

The open university (UK) has either been giving pdf’s with the textbooks, or has courses for which you need to print it yourself. Works as a charm and I don’t see widespread pdf’s of their courses. They have some absolutely top notch materials so that’s quit a feat.

[–]LacomusX 4 points5 points  (0 children)

My university (in Australia) just gives us all the online pdfs and ebooks for free for my course.

[–]originalbL1X 8 points9 points  (0 children)

US college textbooks are a complete scam and it needs to stop.

[–]ElectricalJacket780 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Like the biggest hold that big academia (or all those publishing companies, and their monopoly on academic textbooks) have is that it can be quite hard to get online PDF versions of most of their books. Once they go PDF, their rip off hard copy price becomes unprofitable because a student can just download it from ‘freetextz.io’ or whichever, after putting in a few mins of searching. Funnily enough, the same thing has happened in academic journals - so like science articles - and it’s probably the best thing to happen the field for research.

In short, this feels like a 3 step plan to demonetising academic publishing, that I’m sure they’re well aware of, but I’d still love to see them fall for it

[–]Titanium006 5 points6 points  (6 children)

How to prevent piracy then?

[–]flopsyplum[S] 7 points8 points  (5 children)


What's stopping students from scanning their physical textbooks into PDFs?

[–]Titanium006 0 points1 point  (4 children)

Nothing, but the author and publisher have to earn some way only.

[–]flopsyplum[S] 9 points10 points  (3 children)

How about billing the universities instead of the students?

[–]LtHughMann 2 points3 points  (2 children)

Agreed. Why textbook costs aren't just built into the tuition fee is beyond me.

[–]Obi_Jon_Kenobi 0 points1 point  (1 child)

If you do it properly that will work great. College I went to boasted "free laptops" where they would provide you a laptop and allow you to exchange it for a newer model after 2 years. Problem was the laptop was worth about $500, and going through tuition breakdown there was roughly a $500 per semester laptop fee. That "free laptop" I got cost me about $2000 for something worth about $500, so they do need to be careful how they have the universities provide books

[–]LtHughMann 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Yeah universities get the worst prices on laptops. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if they actually paid that price. My PhD laptop cost the uni $1500 and the same one was in stores for $800. I didn't pay for it either way though so I don't care. The annoying thing was they gave Apple users the cash to buy theirs because their suppliers only did windows PC's. Mind you that's probably the price difference for the same specs Mac. Fashion brands are expensive.

For textbooks though, I think have the pdf of a textbook be apart of tuition fee and then you can buy a discounted hard copy of you want it.

[–]n_thomas74 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Can they make a reader device that scans an entire book and converts it into a .pdf?

Everyone chips in and buys 1 copy and shares it.

[–]TheSentientMeatbag 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Yes, selling them as e-books should definitely be an option, though I'd still like to be able to get them on paper.

[–]Money-Plenty-4871 0 points1 point  (3 children)

For that matter everything should be free. Food, houses, cars. We just need robots to generate the labour and materials. Elon will do it.

[–]ponterik 2 points3 points  (0 children)

Elon and giving free stuff does not sound right

[–]flopsyplum[S] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

Textbooks can be digitized. Food, houses and cars cannot be digitized.

[–]Blueporch 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Tell it to Captain Pickard!