Writing science fiction for a living does not preclude occasional discomfort with change.
Yes, the agreement "allows" authors the right to opt out. That's not good enough! Such terms would stand on its head the totality of copyright law and precedent. As in, the author has the rights to what he has created, unless and until he agrees to grant those rights to another party.
Happily this agreement keeps getting rejected by the court. The latest rejection was a few weeks ago. Science-fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), of which I am a member, offered this guest editorial recently on the subject. (Michael Capobianco is an ex-president of SFWA.)
Association of American Publishers reports that ebooks now outsell paperbacks. That only confirms what I'd been seeing with my own titles, at both bn.com (Barnes and Noble's online presence) and Amazon.
With ebooks selling so well, the pricing of ebooks has recently become very important to authors. So: how much should ebooks cost? The marginal cost of duplication -- i.e., effectively free? Some people think so (as they did of songs and movies, too), and that can't work. Someone must pay for the work of writers, editors, and artists -- or not a lot will be written to be read. That's why the current skirmishing between publishers and book-selling outlets is so important to authors. Here's an interesting essay from SFWA about the competing wholesaler vs. agency models for pricing of ebooks once they leave the publisher.
If that's not enough future shock for one day, I'm back to the far future to work on Fate of Worlds.