If you have a Kindle, or an iPad, or a Nook, Kobo, Sony Reader (did I miss any?), you'll know that it's quite often cheaper to buy the e-book than to buy the book on paper. You may even have assumed that e-books were more profitable than paper ones. So, you pay less, publishers make more--that's good for everyone, right?
Freakonomics today posted an analysis of royalty payments to authors and gross profit to publishers on e-books versus hardcovers. I admit that I've not often worried about how much authors make on their books, but I'm not sure I like that there are such vastly different royalties paid for e-books and hardcovers.
I've noodled over this for a little while, and I think that maybe authors should just get paid a flat royalty, regardless of the media. Hardcover, paperback, or electronic, a book's still a book, right?