I think part of the reaction is that people are used to paying for creative software. Imagine if Adobe had terms like this in Photoshop that required you to use their stock photo agency for any photos edited with photoshop. That would be outrageous and I would be right there with everyone saying it was wrong.
The difference is, Photoshop costs $600 or something (don't know or care, but they charge for the software) while iBooks Author is free.
What if iBooks Author had no other output modes-- just published iBooks to the iBookStore. And that's it. No PDF export, no epub. (Assuming in this example iBooks were more proprietary than they are- say like kindle's proprietary format is.)
Would people be upset about that? It would be a free tool for publishing to a proprietary formant for a specific store.
How could you complain about that? Apple's offering a tool specifically for their publishers. (I'm sure some tool exists like this for iTunes Album content. Another example of this is the iAd Producer software Apple makes which only works for iAds.)
If this product only working in a proprietary format would cause people to not complain--- because obviously the product was built to support the iBookStore-- then really the outrage is that you can use the product for other uses as well, Right?
So, Apple gives you the ability to produce ePubs and PDFs for free, if you want to. They add this feature, and now this product is somehow unreasonable?
Sorry, cek, if you aren't interested in debating this, that's fine. You didn't give reasons for why I was wrong, I just thought of this argument while responding to you. You don't have to engage on the topic further, no biggie, as I may not be responding at all to the reasons you think its wrong.
I think that's the point. You can't use it for other purposes. This is classic bait-and-switch. It has all of the appearances of a content-creation tool like people have used for decades, but it is not.