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I might not be an author

September 12, 2011
by seth godin

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The Author’s Guild is suing the University of Michigan and other college libraries because of their selfish, heinous plan to digitize and freely share old books for which authors cannot be found.

The Author’s Guild, which does not speak for me, nor for any author I know or possibly have ever met, says that this plan could lead to a “potentially catastrophic, widespread dissemination” of books.

Catastrophic?

It’s catastrophic to share dusty books for which the author cannot be found? Why?

Either books are a cultural treasure, part of our heritage and discourse and worthy of discussion, or they are merely a way to make a living. If being an author means that you view the distribution of your work (after you’re so far gone as to be unfindable) as catastrophic, I’m probably not an author.

Count me out.

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