Mainstream educators are beginning to replace paper textbooks with ebooks, a technology that many publishers see as the way of the future. Ebooks eliminate the bulkiness of their paper counterparts. In switching from paper textbooks to electronic, mainstream publishing houses have been experimenting with ebooks for the academic market. Rather than pages of text and photos, ebooks increasingly include video clips, links to Web sites, and more sophisticated pictures and graphics. The creation of customized copies eliminates the used etextbook market, where authors watch their books get sold over and over without getting paid. There are some potential roadblocks to an electronic textbook paradigm. The first comes from a simple economic principle: While there is a market for etextbooks, colleges and students aren't clamoring for them in a way that puts much pressure on publishers to provide them. The lack of electronic standards is another issue. Pricing patterns are also going to be an issue.
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