Outraged at college textbooks costing hundreds of dollars? Now instead of illegally downloading MP3’s, some students are downloading scanned versions of the most popular textbooks. Examples include McMurry’s “Organic Chemistry” which retails for over $200 or the popular Stewart “Calculus” text; both are yours free at torrent download sites.
The problem has been less prevalent than ripping MP3’s due to the manual labor involved in scanning thousands of pages of text, but torrent downloads of texts are way up. This trend comes at an uneasy time for publishers which are just starting to implement subscription models for textbooks. Will hybridizing paper textbooks with rental online ebooks save the textbook publishers?