Macmillan to Sell Cutomizable eTextbooks

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Macmillan is taking a huge step in the eTextbook world with DynamicBooks, a new venture through which professors will be able to seriously customize Macmillan’s textbooks–down to the level of the sentence–without Macmillan contacting the original author.

Macmillan president Brian Napack told the New York Times, “Basically they will go online, log on to the authoring tool, have the content right there and make whatever changes they want…And we don’t even look at it.”

So, basically, a professor could log in, find the textbook he wants to use for his course–say ‘Psychology, by Schacter, Gilbert and Wegner–and delete chapters, move stuff around, and even alter particular sentences he or she doesn’t like, and then make it available to students as an eBook (for $48.76, a lot less than the $134 list price for the hardcover) or a more expensive POD version. The books will be available through the DynamicBooks site, through CourseSmart, and as iPhone apps.