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(The Register)   Releasing E-Books without DRM causes no increase in piracy. Presumably because the pirates already broke down the barriers, plundered what they wanted, killed traditional distribution schemes and pissed on the ashes   (theregister.co.uk) divider line 79
    More: Obvious, DRM, e-books, pirates  
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1307 clicks; posted to Geek » on 09 May 2013 at 9:33 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-09 08:28:55 AM  
The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

Still, readers tend to be older than people who download music and video games. I would think that would make them slightly richer and less technically savvy than the other groups.  Also if you really want to read the book for free there is always the public library.
 
2013-05-09 08:57:18 AM  
People only steal what's valuable. I haven't  seen an E-book worth stealing.
 
2013-05-09 09:38:38 AM  
Steam, Netflix, and Hulu are the reasons I hardly pirate anymore. Still pirate the pron, cause the wife likes it too.
 
2013-05-09 09:42:40 AM  

EvilEgg: The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

Still, readers tend to be older than people who download music and video games. I would think that would make them slightly richer and less technically savvy than the other groups.  Also if you really want to read the book for free there is always the public library.


You'd be wrong.
 
2013-05-09 09:44:39 AM  

wambu: People only steal what's valuable. I haven't  seen an E-book worth stealing.


AMERICA: READING IS FOR FA***TS.
 
2013-05-09 09:44:54 AM  

wambu: People only steal what's valuable. I haven't  seen an E-book worth stealing.


Done in two. You could just cruise the Gutenberg Project for dee-ells of enough good reads to last the rest of your life. For stuff in copyright, there's the library.

/not a fan of Dan Brown or that weird Mormon chick who writes the sexy vampire books.
 
2013-05-09 09:50:52 AM  
killed traditional distribution schemes

If by traditional, you mean paper books and local bookstores, then no, ebooks and amazon did that.  If by traditional, you mean DRM-laden, then that's a shiatty, anti-consumer tradition, and I'm glad to see it burn.
 
2013-05-09 09:51:49 AM  

doglover: EvilEgg: The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

Still, readers tend to be older than people who download music and video games. I would think that would make them slightly richer and less technically savvy than the other groups.  Also if you really want to read the book for free there is always the public library.

You'd be wrong.


Please explain how EvilEgg is wrong.
 
2013-05-09 09:53:11 AM  
I'm sorry, but I have been assured by numerous people on this very site that online piracy destroys everything it touches and that we'd all be living in a veritable utopia if those damn selfish thieves would start paying for shiat instead of downloading it for free.
 
2013-05-09 09:57:48 AM  

Valiente: wambu: People only steal what's valuable. I haven't  seen an E-book worth stealing.

Done in two. You could just cruise the Gutenberg Project for dee-ells of enough good reads to last the rest of your life. For stuff in copyright, there's the library.

/not a fan of Dan Brown or that weird Mormon chick who writes the sexy vampire books.


Libraries in cities are having more problems with the books being infested with bedbugs. I'd rather avoid that.

If they'd hurry up and get more of their collection offered for ereaders that would be nice.
 
2013-05-09 10:02:11 AM  
Have the pirates also crushed their enemies, seen them driven before them, and heard the lamentation of their women?
 
2013-05-09 10:08:00 AM  

EvilEgg: The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

Still, readers tend to be older than people who download music and video games. I would think that would make them slightly richer and less technically savvy than the other groups.  Also if you really want to read the book for free there is always the public library.


That's odd because literacy rates generally increase with each generation and most people who read for enjoyment do so from a very young age.
 
2013-05-09 10:10:52 AM  

47 is the new 42: doglover: EvilEgg: The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

Still, readers tend to be older than people who download music and video games. I would think that would make them slightly richer and less technically savvy than the other groups.  Also if you really want to read the book for free there is always the public library.

You'd be wrong.

Please explain how EvilEgg is wrong.


I know lots of younger people who still read books, especially comic books, in digital form. They're not all paying.

I'd wager Evil Egg is underestimating how much piracy there is, just like companies underestimated how little DRM does to stop it.
 
2013-05-09 10:13:44 AM  
One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.
 
2013-05-09 10:18:49 AM  

Russ1642: One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.


And it's free.

You get a much superior product for the price of the electricity it takes to turn on your machine and router and the legit option is a cancerous file you can't even transfer from and old computer to a new one.

If you want to enjoy any digital media there's no choice but to pirate it, even if you bought a legit copy.
 
2013-05-09 10:28:33 AM  
Why would I need to pirate books when I can download them from my local library for free?
 
2013-05-09 10:30:10 AM  

doglover: If you want to enjoy any digital media there's no choice but to pirate it, even if you bought a legit copy.


I've gone this with with both CDs and DVDs. I have 200 CDs in a closet, but it's easier for me to pirate it than it is dig the CD out of the closet.

Same thing last time I got a DVD. I tried to rip it to add it to the media server. I thought I had the right program and all the right settings, and after about an hour of processing, I had a video file was playable in a particular player but failed on every other device. I ended up just pirating the movie in about 30 minutes or less and got a working file.
 
2013-05-09 10:31:43 AM  

Russ1642: One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.


Outside of competing e-ink readers that don't support installation of 3rd party apps because the hardware is so basic, how many devices are out there that you'd want to read a Kindle book on, but can't? They make their app available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows 8/RT, and OS X. Hell, the HP Touchpad even had a Kindle app, and the Nooks tablets are getting Play store access soon. Amazon's Kindle platform is on par with Steam in regards to keeping the DRM from being inconvenient to customers, and for comics the Comixology platform is similarly a buy once read everywhere proposition.
 
2013-05-09 10:34:13 AM  
I went looking for torrents of two different books a few days ago, it was the first time I'd done so as I usually read printed books ... anyhoo, I couldn't find either.

One was a Booker Prize winner and the other was a David Sedaris book, so it wasn't completely obscure stuff.
 
2013-05-09 10:36:27 AM  
Baen books has been completely DRM free for its e-books since the beginning, and they've never looked back. I've done a lot of business with them over the last years, precisely for that reason.
 
2013-05-09 10:37:17 AM  
At a 100Mbps, it's a coin toss which is faster: getting up and walking to the bookshelf or just downloading a novel with a torrent, which clocks in at about 12 seconds. Most popular pdfs are in the 3 mb range.
 
2013-05-09 10:38:17 AM  

Mad_Radhu: Russ1642: One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.

Outside of competing e-ink readers that don't support installation of 3rd party apps because the hardware is so basic, how many devices are out there that you'd want to read a Kindle book on, but can't? They make their app available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows 8/RT, and OS X. Hell, the HP Touchpad even had a Kindle app, and the Nooks tablets are getting Play store access soon. Amazon's Kindle platform is on par with Steam in regards to keeping the DRM from being inconvenient to customers, and for comics the Comixology platform is similarly a buy once read everywhere proposition.


Kindle is a good example. I pirate movies because you just can't pay for high quality HD files not loaded with crippling DRM. However, Kindle apps are on all of my devices so I have no problem paying for books. I have a few hundred bucks in Kindle books. When they change and the DRM becomes an issue with books I'll switch to pirating them.
 
2013-05-09 10:38:27 AM  

doglover: Russ1642: One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.

And it's free.

You get a much superior product for the price of the electricity it takes to turn on your machine and router and the legit option is a cancerous file you can't even transfer from and old computer to a new one.

If you want to enjoy any digital media there's no choice but to pirate it, even if you bought a legit copy.


In the case of books, when I get a new tablet to read on, I just fire up the Kindle app and download the books again on the new device. So long as I go online and deregister phones and computers I'm no longer using, I can do move the file from old devices to new ones indefinitely, and can even have the book same available on a decent number of devices at the same time. DRM is like laws: if they are not Draconian, most honest people won't even notice they are there.
 
2013-05-09 10:38:41 AM  
Old news is old. Baen's had their free library online for years now.
 
2013-05-09 10:40:34 AM  

Mad_Radhu: Russ1642: One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.

Outside of competing e-ink readers that don't support installation of 3rd party apps because the hardware is so basic, how many devices are out there that you'd want to read a Kindle book on, but can't? They make their app available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows 8/RT, and OS X. Hell, the HP Touchpad even had a Kindle app, and the Nooks tablets are getting Play store access soon. Amazon's Kindle platform is on par with Steam in regards to keeping the DRM from being inconvenient to customers, and for comics the Comixology platform is similarly a buy once read everywhere proposition.


Until Amazon decides they don't want you to have the book anymore.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/18/technology/companies/18amazon.html ?_ r=0
 
2013-05-09 10:40:40 AM  

Mad_Radhu: So long as I go online and deregister phones and computers I'm no longer using, I can do move the file from old devices to new ones indefinitely


With a non-DRMed file, you can copy it indefinitely without doing anything at all.

DRM is not like laws. Laws are like laws. DRM is like annoying people who set up toll booths and charge you time to cross the barrier. Any philosopher will tell you time is non-refundable and so you should avoid wasting even a drop of it.
 
2013-05-09 10:43:21 AM  
If I like and Author I will buy their works to support them,  but I would imagine the most pirated books out there are text books and other specialized and expensive books.

CSB
I once drove a professor into an apoplectic fit when I used a downloaded PDF of his vanity textbook that was a rehash of other texts.  It was  200 pages long and cost nearly a dollar a page, so I said to myself fark that and just looked online and some other student of his from a previous year had digitized the whole thing.
 
2013-05-09 10:48:34 AM  

EvilEgg: The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

3.bp.blogspot.com

As a dealer in both common and rare books I'll get them at a steal and sell them like my children.
 
2013-05-09 10:52:45 AM  

ParanoidAgnostic: Until Amazon decides they don't want you to have the book anymore.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/18/technology/companies/18amazon.html ?_ r=0


The publisher didn't have rights to the book in the first place, and Amazon refunded everyone who bought it in full, so was on par when a product gets recalled and customers return it to the store for a refund. Amazon definitely overstepped by forcing the deletions, but it caused such a shiatstorm 4 years ago that it taught Amazon a less and they are likely never going to repeat this again because they got such bad press the first time.
 
2013-05-09 10:54:26 AM  

Cormee: I went looking for torrents of two different books a few days ago, it was the first time I'd done so as I usually read printed books ... anyhoo, I couldn't find either.

One was a Booker Prize winner and the other was a David Sedaris book, so it wasn't completely obscure stuff.


rumor has it torrents aren't as common as filelockers for books.
 
2013-05-09 10:55:31 AM  

Mad_Radhu: ParanoidAgnostic: Until Amazon decides they don't want you to have the book anymore.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/18/technology/companies/18amazon.html ?_ r=0

The publisher didn't have rights to the book in the first place, and Amazon refunded everyone who bought it in full, so was on par when a product gets recalled and customers return it to the store for a refund. Amazon definitely overstepped by forcing the deletions, but it caused such a shiatstorm 4 years ago that it taught Amazon a less and they are likely never going to repeat this again because they got such bad press the first time.


They did a forced deletion, and many people lost notes and bookmarks. Amazon should have just licensed the book properly so that their customers weren't affected. They deserved all the bad press.
 
2013-05-09 10:56:21 AM  

ParanoidAgnostic: Mad_Radhu: Russ1642: One of the biggest issues with piracy is that the pirates are offering a better product. They strip out the DRM, FBI warnings you can't advance through, and best of all you can use your files anywhere. They're no longer tied to a single device or reader.

Outside of competing e-ink readers that don't support installation of 3rd party apps because the hardware is so basic, how many devices are out there that you'd want to read a Kindle book on, but can't? They make their app available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Windows 8/RT, and OS X. Hell, the HP Touchpad even had a Kindle app, and the Nooks tablets are getting Play store access soon. Amazon's Kindle platform is on par with Steam in regards to keeping the DRM from being inconvenient to customers, and for comics the Comixology platform is similarly a buy once read everywhere proposition.

Until Amazon decides they don't want you to have the book anymore.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/18/technology/companies/18amazon.html ?_ r=0


If you wrote a book and another person started selling it illegally Amazon without you getting any of the money how would you want amazon to react?
 
rpm
2013-05-09 10:59:10 AM  

Carth: If you wrote a book and another person started selling it illegally Amazon without you getting any of the money how would you want amazon to react?


Let's assumed that happened with traditional books. Will Amazon break into your house and take the book back?
 
2013-05-09 11:01:05 AM  

Russ1642: Kindle is a good example. I pirate movies because you just can't pay for high quality HD files not loaded with crippling DRM. However, Kindle apps are on all of my devices so I have no problem paying for books. I have a few hundred bucks in Kindle books. When they change and the DRM becomes an issue with books I'll switch to pirating them.


And Kindle DRM is easy enough to defeat anyway.  I buy my Kindle books but I make DRM-free copies just in case.
 
2013-05-09 11:02:15 AM  
All DRM on digital media accomplishes is to provide an annoyance to legitimate customers.

Pirates can and will find ways to pirate ebooks they want.  DRM does not stop them.

Then there are people like me.  I believe in paying for ebooks and music that I want.  However, if I am paying for an ebook, I want to own the ebook.  I want it to be usable on any device I have, and I want to be able to archive it in my digital library.  I want it to be in a format that will remain accessible for decades (like a physical book) and I want its continued accessibility to not be contingent on the continued existence of some company and its DRM servers.

This is why, regardless of source, the first thing I do on buying an ebook is strip the DRM and store it in plain epub format.

Thank god for Calibre and the various plugins available for it.  Best way around for managing an ebook library full of books from various sources.
 
2013-05-09 11:02:48 AM  

doglover: Mad_Radhu: So long as I go online and deregister phones and computers I'm no longer using, I can do move the file from old devices to new ones indefinitely

With a non-DRMed file, you can copy it indefinitely without doing anything at all.

DRM is not like laws. Laws are like laws. DRM is like annoying people who set up toll booths and charge you time to cross the barrier. Any philosopher will tell you time is non-refundable and so you should avoid wasting even a drop of it.


How is copying the file over any faster then logging into your Kindle account on your new device, taping on the picture of the book, and downloading it? Book files are so tiny the downloads are basically instantaneous. Besides, you can't really claim the moral high ground because if you are pirating you are a freeloader on the system. I'm the one who helps pay the authors who worked their ass off to create the book you are downloading because you refused to pay for something unless it meets an unrealistic standard of convenience.

If you are going to pirate, go ahead and do it. It really doesn't make that big a difference in the big scheme of things, as Tor found out. Just don't have pretensions that you are doing it because you are taking a noble stand. That shiat annoys me. You are simply too cheap to pay for your entertainment, and you are trying to rationalize your piracy.
 
2013-05-09 11:07:35 AM  

Russ1642: They did a forced deletion, and many people lost notes and bookmarks. Amazon should have just licensed the book properly so that their customers weren't affected. They deserved all the bad press.


I think they assumed the publisher they were working with had the rights, and didn't realize it until contacted by the real rights holders. This was right at the beginning of the Kindle bookstore, so they were still working out a lot of deals. I'll admit, they really handled it in a hamfisted manner, and should have dealt with it better. But it became such an issue that forced deletions are now something they probably won't even consider in the future.
 
2013-05-09 11:13:40 AM  

rpm: Carth: If you wrote a book and another person started selling it illegally Amazon without you getting any of the money how would you want amazon to react?

Let's assumed that happened with traditional books. Will Amazon break into your house and take the book back?


No but customs can seize any counterfeit products you try to bring into the US and police can arrest you for being in possession of stolen goods.
 
2013-05-09 11:18:12 AM  

Doc Daneeka: All DRM on digital media accomplishes is to provide an annoyance to legitimate customers.

Pirates can and will find ways to pirate ebooks they want.  DRM does not stop them.

Then there are people like me.  I believe in paying for ebooks and music that I want.  However, if I am paying for an ebook, I want to own the ebook.  I want it to be usable on any device I have, and I want to be able to archive it in my digital library.  I want it to be in a format that will remain accessible for decades (like a physical book) and I want its continued accessibility to not be contingent on the continued existence of some company and its DRM servers.

This is why, regardless of source, the first thing I do on buying an ebook is strip the DRM and store it in plain epub format.

Thank god for Calibre and the various plugins available for it.  Best way around for managing an ebook library full of books from various sources.


I'd be satisfied if the ebook version cost less than the print version.

But pretty much everything old enough that the copyright has expired is a available for free. Dickens, Bronte, Doyle, etc. Project Gutenberg and a nice list.
 
2013-05-09 11:18:26 AM  

Mad_Radhu: How is copying the file over any faster then logging into your Kindle account on your new device, taping on the picture of the book, and downloading it?


First, you'd need to have a Kindle account.

No login.

TommyJReed: I once drove a professor into an apoplectic fit when I used a downloaded PDF of his vanity textbook that was a rehash of other texts.


I once had to reverse engineer a text for a final paper because it was an out of print mid-career philosophical treatise from an obscure frenchman. It clocked in at $.50 a page.

Come finals week, every copy was gone from the library, so I was only left with his earlier and later books, This was before pirating. If I had been able to pirate it, I could have written the paper in a quarter of the time.
 
2013-05-09 11:20:32 AM  

Mad_Radhu: Russ1642: They did a forced deletion, and many people lost notes and bookmarks. Amazon should have just licensed the book properly so that their customers weren't affected. They deserved all the bad press.

I think they assumed the publisher they were working with had the rights, and didn't realize it until contacted by the real rights holders. This was right at the beginning of the Kindle bookstore, so they were still working out a lot of deals. I'll admit, they really handled it in a hamfisted manner, and should have dealt with it better. But it became such an issue that forced deletions are now something they probably won't even consider in the future.


So what exactly were the repercussions? That's rhetorical, there were none. They didn't go out of business. They didn't lose a lot of money. They still continue to rent people digital copies of books for the same price you can buy a real hard copy.
I believe that more forced deletions are only a matter of when, and not if.
 
2013-05-09 11:22:28 AM  

Mad_Radhu: How is copying the file over any faster then logging into your Kindle account on your new device, taping on the picture of the book, and downloading it? Book files are so tiny the downloads are basically instantaneous. Besides, you can't really claim the moral high ground because if you are pirating you are a freeloader on the system. I'm the one who helps pay the authors who worked their ass off to create the book you are downloading because you refused to pay for something unless it meets an unrealistic standard of convenience.


How does that help people who buy non-network, non-OS devices like Ectaco Jetbooks? The DRM argument for eBooks is no different than it is for DRM video, audiobook, or music files. If I'm spending the money on a physical version, it's mine for life. If I spend money on a digital version, it's only good for the life of its host device or a very similar equivalent.

Non-DRM ePub files will almost certainly have some kind of reader 50 years from now. Can the same be guaranteed about a Nook Book?
 
2013-05-09 11:23:09 AM  

EvilEgg: The only people who steal your books are your friends.  Of course, that is for traditional books.

Still, readers tend to be older than people who download music and video games. I would think that would make them slightly richer and less technically savvy than the other groups.  Also if you really want to read the book for free there is always the public library.


There are many, many website with links to free books. Especially Kindle-related. I'm also a music person, and I wouldn't say that I'm an idiot, but then again my dating history....

/yea, yea outliers

But anywho, books are just not something that you actively think to steal. Not return it from the library? Yea. Textbooks... definitely. But "Charlotte's Web"? Na.
 
2013-05-09 11:26:02 AM  
If it wasn't for bittorrent, I wouldn't be able to get my college textbooks. I can't afford 3 textbooks at $150 a pop. fark you, textbook mafia.
 
2013-05-09 11:27:36 AM  
I buy lots of technical e-books because a) they are an assload of heavy to carry around in paper form and b) they go out of date that I don't feel bad tossing them (and the library doesn't want em).

O'Reilly and Pragmatic are always holding sales so if you hold out, you can get a decent book for super-cheap.

wambu: People only steal what's valuable. I haven't  seen an E-book worth stealing.


No Doubt

i651.photobucket.com
 
2013-05-09 11:28:52 AM  
Things I pirate:

1. Anything I already own in same or better quality
2. Anything that is broadcast over the air in any country, through any medium
3. Things that I want to decide if they are worth buying

I can assure the anonymous internet that my pirating of some media has actually made me spend *more* money on said media through legitimate sources by allowing me to have zero financial risk exposure to see if it's something I'd like to own
 
2013-05-09 11:29:01 AM  

Carth: Valiente: wambu: People only steal what's valuable. I haven't  seen an E-book worth stealing.

Done in two. You could just cruise the Gutenberg Project for dee-ells of enough good reads to last the rest of your life. For stuff in copyright, there's the library.

/not a fan of Dan Brown or that weird Mormon chick who writes the sexy vampire books.

Libraries in cities are having more problems with the books being infested with bedbugs. I'd rather avoid that.

If they'd hurry up and get more of their collection offered for ereaders that would be nice.


I've purchased a few $1, $2 and $3 e-books because the subject matter interested me. They all could use the efforts of a good editor and often their e-book formatting sucks balls.

I'm currently reading a sci-fi time travel trilogy that has an interesting story and is set in Norfolk, VA, an unusual locale for a book (Cinderella Liberty was set here, that's all I'm aware of for fictional works). It's certainly worth a few bucks, but not to steal.
 
2013-05-09 11:30:04 AM  
Also, recommend Caibre for e-book management and stripping drm.

http://calibre-ebook.com/
 
2013-05-09 11:32:27 AM  

Carth: If you wrote a book and another person started selling it illegally Amazon without you getting any of the money how would you want amazon to react?


Pay the legitimate owner a negotiated license fee for the books already sold, withdraw the book from further sales and leave the innocent consumer alone.
 
2013-05-09 11:32:34 AM  

Mad_Radhu: The publisher didn't have rights to the book in the first place, and Amazon refunded everyone who bought it in full, so was on par when a product gets recalled and customers return it to the store for a refund. Amazon definitely overstepped by forcing the deletions, but it caused such a shiatstorm 4 years ago that it taught Amazon a less and they are likely never going to repeat this again because they got such bad press the first time.


Can you please cite the example where customers purchased a physical book that was recalled and they were forced, willingly or otherwise, to return to the store for a refund?
 
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