Originally Posted by SteveEisenberg
They are setting up a nine person board to pick the fifty popular lower-level courses, put the books out to bids, and then choose one bid for each course. Sounds fairly centralized to me.
As I read it, professors can still assign what books they want. But if students already paid for a book through their tuition and/or taxes, they will be understandably peeved if their professor chooses a book other than what the state board dictated.
I guess the test of this will be what prices the bids come in at. If low, I'm wrong, and everyone else is right.
As far as I can tell, the winning bidders get paid by California, but have to make their books available to the world. This will put existing publishers in a tough position. Will they bid condensed versions geared to the community colleges? Or they could go the other way and bid versions stripped of most graphics, and thus more appropriate to Berkeley and UCLA. Dare the board declare a book proposal the winning bid and trust the author(s) to complete it? It will be interesting to see how this plays out.
Can Wikipedia bid?
So they are going to educate by the lowest bidder? Shouldn't they be focusing on quality?