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View Diary: DRM for e-books: Repeating history, not learning from it (27 comments)

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  •  this is a big problem with DRM (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    danps, kurt, Williston Barrett

    Your library is chained to the whims and fortunes of the digital publisher. Also, what happens to your books when Amazon/B&N/Apple decides to change to a new improved and incompatible format, or abandon DRM altogether?

    History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce - Karl Marx

    by quill on Fri May 31, 2013 at 06:49:36 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  To me, the big problem with DRM (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurt, Williston Barrett

      is how restrictive it is as to device. I was astonished to find that
      I couldn't open a Nook book (which uses the epub format) on a generic epub reader on my PC, because of DRM.
        Of course the Kindle formats are proprietary, but epub is open source.
        I've stopped using DRMs on my books for that reason.
        However, I think that authors should be paid for their work, and that widespread pirating would destroy the ebook industry.

      •  When I wrote about depressing sales (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        quill, elfling, kurt, Williston Barrett

        that's exactly what I was referring to.  Folks are going to say, I don't know where I'll be able to read this if I buy it - screw it.

        That's exactly how I was with music.  I didn't buy any MP3 songs until DRM was removed, then I started buying.  Customers don't want to deal with that kind of hassle.  They'll just stay out of the market entirely.

      •  actually "piracy" could help most authors (0+ / 0-)

        Fair studies (ie not fake "research" ginned up by industry) of the effect of piracy on movie and music profits have found that it often is net positive. This is because sharing increases word of mouth effects and drives more sales. This could be true for ebooks (remains to be proven) as well, especially given that most ebook authors usually desperately need readers to read and recommend their work. You can't make money unless you gain popularity but achieving that is really hard to do in publishing. So authors stand to gain from piracy, but it is the publishers who do not, and they are the real ones pushing for DRM and other restrictions.

        History repeats itself, first as tragedy, second as farce - Karl Marx

        by quill on Fri May 31, 2013 at 09:11:17 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Would you say, then... (0+ / 0-)

          ...that those engaged in piracy of entertainment media today are, in fact, perpetuating the old business model?  Should those opposed to DRM and other enforcement schemes be rewarding the industry by distributing content for free?

        •  We've had book piracy for DECADES... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          quill, kurt

          By which I mean ways in which copies of books were passed around without the publishers getting an additional cut.

          They're called PUBLIC LIBRARIES.

          And USED BOOKSTORES.

          The weirdest thing about the way this developed with the music business was - the big record companies were fighting tooth and claw against Napster and the like - a way in which their artists were getting tons of listens and free exposure - at the same time that they were fighting tooth and claw to get their artists tons of listens and free (and in many cases, PAID FOR) exposure on RADIO.

          It made absolutely no sense.

          And now book publishers are making the same mistake (as well as pricing their product so high that it both eliminates casual or impulse purchases, as well as driving people to pirate copies)

        •  And yet, no one pirates unknown authors/artists. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Bill W

          This is a specious point.  My students often attempt to float it, too, but let's be honest.  No one is stealing Fourth of July's music.  They're stealing Maroon 5's.  No one is  stealing Saladin Ahmed's novels; they're stealing Stephen King's.  No one is stealing We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks; they're stealing Star Trek: Into Darkness.

          Moreover, should be up to the individual artist or author and his or her agents to decide if she or he wants to give her or his work out for free to get "word of mouth", not the "good people" at Pirate Bay.

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