A group of Chinese authors is petitioning Apple to halt the distribution of their books through multiple apps in the App Store, according to the 21st Century Herald Tribune (as reported by Reuters). The authors are part of a group called the Writers Rights Alliance, and this isn't the first time the Alliance has gone after a technology company for offering its books for download without consent. The group previously petitioned China's largest search engine, Baidu, to cease the publication of its books in the Baidu Library (similar to Google Books).
However, a spokesperson for the Writers Rights Alliance said Apple's allowance of apps on the App Store is a graver situation. The Baidu Library offered Alliance books downloads for free, but some of the apps in the App Store make a profit through sales of the app or in-app purchases. From the Writers Rights Alliance's perspective, Apple is infringing on the Alliance's intellectual property by taking its 30 percent commission on sales of the authors' works. Apple has not yet publicly commented on the matter.