Textbook publisher Wiley & Sons loses Supreme Court copyright case

JISHOU, HUNAN — Selling textbooks printed abroad in the USA does not infringe the copyright of the books’ publisher, the Supreme Court ruled yesterday in a 6-3 decision. The decision means a Thai entrepreneur can legally resell textbooks in the States. The adversaries in this case were John Wiley & Sons, which publishes the text I used for AP Physics for many years, among others, and Supap Kirtsaeng, a Thai student who found a clever way to make money. He bought Wiley’s texts legally in Thailand, where the prices are lower than in the States, and then resold them (legally) in the USA for a tidy profit, while still undercutting Wiley’s American retail prices. (Which is not hard, considering how high those prices are, especially for science, technology, engineering and math — STEM — texts. One book alone might cost $150 or more.) As you can imagine, Wiley was not pleased, and took Kirtsaeng to court, contending that he was violating its copyright by reselling books intended for Thai consumers in the USA. Two lower courts found in Wiley’s favor, but the Supreme Court overturned those decisions, finding no clear provisions in existing copyright law that would make Kirtsaeng’s enterprise ...

Literary daydreaming, and other such bookishness 3

JISHOU, HUNAN — Like a lot of other writers, I’ve toyed with the idea of writing a book. So far, that’s as far as I’ve gotten with the notion, though, so don’t hold your breath waiting for the first Wheat-dogg bestseller. It’s still in the preconceptual stage. Certainly, there is fodder for a book from my experiences as a foreigner teaching English in China. Many ex-pats end up writing books or ebooks about their lives abroad. Having read a few as market research, these books (and for that matter, blogs) fall into a few main categories: My life abroad was wonderful, life-changing! You should give it a try. My life abroad has made me an expert in all things abroad. Read my book! My life abroad was a crappy experience, but I am going to write a funny book about it anyway. My life abroad showed me that America is the bestest place evah in the whole world. My life abroad showed me that America is traveling down the road to ruin, but my chosen living place is a virtual paradise. (By the way, I’ve got some land to sell you if you wanna come here.) I want to write ...

The primary-secondary textbook mill exposed

A few posts back, I wrote about the efforts by anti-evolution members of the Texas State Board of Education to emasculate the state’s science standards. It was big news, because Texas periodically buys its textbooks en masse, giving it a disproportionate influence on the content of the nation’s school textbooks. To put it another way, if the Texas SBOE had mandated that Texas children learn about Intelligent Design in Biology or the steady-state-universe theory in Earth Science, the SBOE would then prefer to buy textbooks that cover such topics. So, textbook publishers would scramble to add this content to their existing texts to remain competitive. If the changes were limited to Texas, it would be bad for Texas schoolchildren. But textbook publishers cannot offer 50 or more different textbooks versions, one for each state and territory of the USA. It would be neither feasible nor economic. So they target their textbooks’ content to the three biggest buyers, Texas, California and Florida. Tamim Ansary, who used to work in the textbook field, wrote an expose of sorts about the textbook mill for Edutopia in 2004. It’s been reprinted on the Edutopia website, and well worth the read, especially if you have ...
WP Facebook Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com