Science fiction writer Cory Doctorow (also a former EFF staffer and activist) explains why he’s crowdfunding his new audiobook online. Despite the large publishers for his print editions, “I can’t get anyone to do my audiobooks. Amazon and its subsidiary Audible, which controls 90% of the audiobook sales, won’t carry any of my audiobooks because I won’t let them put any of their digital rights management on it.
“I don’t want you locked in with their DRM as a condition of experiencing my work,” he explains in a video on Kickstarter. “And so I have to do it myself.”
He’s promising to sell the completed book through all the usual platforms “except Audible,” because “I want to send a message. If we get a lot of pre-orders for this, it’s going to tell something to Amazon and Audible about how people prioritize the stories they love over the technology they hate, and why technological freedom matters to people.
“It’s also going to help my publisher and other major publishers understand that there is an opportunity here to work with crowdfunding platforms in concert with the major publishers’ platforms to sell a lot of books in ways that side-step the monopolists, and that connect artists and audiences directly.”
it’s the third book in a series which began with the dystopian thriller Little Brother (recommended by Neil Gaiman) and continued with a sequel named Homeland. (“You may have seen Edward Snowden grab it off his bedstand and put it in his go bag and go into permanent exile in Hong Kong” in the documentary Citizen 4,” Doctorow says in his fundraising video.) The newest book, Attack Surface, finds a “technologist from the other side” — a surveillance contractor — now reckoning with their conscience while being hunted with the very cyber-weapons they’d helped to build. “There are a lot of technologists who are reckoning with the moral consequences of their actions these days,” Doctorow says, adding “that’s part of what inspired me to write this…
“Anyone who’s been paying attention knows that there’s been a collision between our freedom and our technology brewing for a long time.”
Just three days after launching the Kickstarter campaign, Doctorow had already raised over $120,000 over his original goal of $7,000 — with 26 days left to go. And he also promises that the top pledge premium is for real….
$10,000 You and Cory together come up with the premise for his next story in the “Little Brother” universe. $75 or more All three novels as both audiobooks and ebooks $40 or more All three novels as audiobooks $35 or more All three novels as ebooks $25 or more The audiobook and the ebook of Cory’s new novel, Attack Surface $15 or more The audiobook for Attack Surface $14 or more The new book Attack Surface in ebook format as a .mobi/.epub file $11 or more The second book in the series, Homeland, in ebook format as a .mobi/.epub file $10 or more The first novel in the series in ebook format as a .mobi/.epub file $1 or more Cory will email you the complete text of “Little Brother,” the first book in the series, cryptographically signed with his private key
It’s good to see that there are ways around the duopolies / monopolies that have taken control of so many facets of our lives. The books are available for free but paying helps break the system.