Mark Coker, founder of self-publishing platform Smashwords, criticized Pearson’s acquisition of self-publishing company Author Solutions in a recent post.
He suggested that the purchase was an investment in a business that makes money off of authors, rather than an investment in self-published authors. Coker wrote:
Does Pearson think that Author Solutions represents the future of indie publishing? Author Solutions is one of the companies that put the “V” in vanity. Author Solutions earn 2/3 or more of their income selling services and books to authors, not selling authors’ books to readers. Does Pearson think so little of authors that they’ve decided they can earn more money selling them services than selling their books? Don’t get me wrong, I have no qualm with indies investing in professional editing, proofreading and cover design. I encourage that. There’s just something about this that feels icky.