I subscribed to the new Tor.com newsletter this year, drawn by the offer of free ebooks (without DRM!) delivered every week. I haven’t had a chance to read all the books they’ve sent, but it’s been nice getting books in my favorite format (Mobipocket) without having to worry about DRM getting in my way.

I really looked forward to the unveiling of the new Tor.com site, thinking that the free ebooks were a sign that Tor had finally caught up with the 21st century and was going to offer DRM-free ebooks for sale.

The site launched yesterday, and it’s a big disappointment. There’s no ebooks for sale, no celebration of the (science fiction!) publishing industry joining the modern world.

It’s got blogs. Blogs written by editors and publishers, people that usually already have blogs elsewhere. Oh, and you can leave comments, and join the “discussion”.

WTF? Where’s the value in that? I already get my science fiction book-scene news from blogs written by authors and publishers. Why would I go to Tor.com to read the same stuff from fewer perspectives?

I feel a little like I’ve just been through a bait-and-switch. That’s why I’m not linking to the site; there’s no reason to go there.

Ron Toland @mindbat