Publishers Make Lots on Public Domain Works. Waddya know. And it's big media companies too: B&N, Penguin, Bantam Dell Publishing Group and The Modern Library (of Bertelsmann). And thanks to Sonny Bono, publishers of public domain books no longer keep track of works going into the public domain, because well, they aren't getting new titles that fall out of copyright. “The first thing you'd do in classics publishing was keep a list [~] a rolling schedule of what was going into the… [bIPlog]
Read the Times article. This is going to be a real problem. A huge area of the publishers libraries will not exist. Basic income will disappear. But at least Disney will still hold all the rights to any mouse-like creature that wears gloves, right? Should a book that was written over 75 years ago still have an exclusive publisher? [A Man with a Ph.D. – Richard Gayle's Weblog]
There is, and always will be, tons of money in the repackaging of the free to those that do not know how to get it for free. This is the exploitation of lack of knowledge, and it is one of the drivers of wealth.