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DRM

Digital Rights Management

E-book review: The Chronicles of the Kencyrath is fun, dark fantasy
May 26, 2014 | 2:22 pm

godstalkIf you’re looking for something interesting to read, I’m going to talk about an underappreciated, inexpensive series of e-books from Baen that I’ve grown to love. It’s called the Chronicles of the Kencyrath, and the first book, God Stalk, was written by Patricia C. Hodgell back in 1982. Go and buy and read it right now, links are at the bottom of this post. You want me to tell you more about it? What, don’t you trust me? Well, all right. I first came across God Stalk back in the late ‘90s, as one of the top-ranking books...

Enjoying OverDrive e-books from the Indianapolis Public Library
May 18, 2014 | 2:12 pm

PANO_20140422_152236One of the great things about being in Indianapolis is having the Indianapolis Public Library’s main branch just a few blocks away. It’s a gorgeous place, with plenty of books and excellent facilities. One of those facilities I like the most is an extensive OverDrive e-book collection. The library back in Springfield only had a few thousand titles, and not many I actually wanted. But the Indianapolis library has almost 35,000 fiction titles alone, including all three Hugo nominees Orbit decided not to provide to the Hugo voter packet. This morning I’ve been checking out and downloading a number...

Hugo voter e-book bundle to include entire Wheel of Time series
April 21, 2014 | 4:15 pm

hugo_wheel-of-timeThe Hugo nominations have been announced. One of the more interesting things to come out of the nominations this time around has been the inclusion of the entire Wheel of Time series for “Best Novel.” This is something of a first for the Hugos, and would probably be at least mildly controversial in other years. (This year, what with the Jonathan Ross thing and another more recent kerfuffle that I might discuss in another post, it seems to rate as relatively minor on the outrage scale.) But one side-effect of that nomination is to make Supporting Membership in this...

Amazon to purchase ComiXology e-comic-book store
April 10, 2014 | 6:24 pm

Looks like the Big Bad Amazon Wolf has just gulped down another hefty meal. Two weeks after rumors started going around (as noticed by Nate Hoffelder at the Digital Reader), Amazon has announced it will be acquiring ComiXology, the e-comic-book store that carries titles from Marvel, DC, Image, and a number of others. Although the various comic book publishers are trying to push their own stores, ComiXology has nonetheless become the best known source for e-books of popular comics. Now, like Audible and so many other brands, it is going to find a new home at Amazon. News is...

StoryBundle releases video game book bundle
April 2, 2014 | 7:47 pm

The Humble Indie Bundle started out selling video games, but branched out into e-books down the road. This makes it almost, but not quite, symmetrical that its competitor StoryBundle, who started with e-books all along, has now come out with a bundle of…e-books about video games. The base price for this bundle is $3, which gets you six DRM-free multiformat e-books, mostly non-fiction: How to Do Things With Videogames by Ian Bogost Atari Inc.: Business is Fun by Marty Goldberg and Curt Vendel SCROLL: Collection 01-11 by Ray Barnholt...

StoryBundle offers ‘Epic Fantasy Bundle’ with titles by Gaiman, Sanderson, Hickman, David, and more
March 6, 2014 | 5:09 am

The_Camelot_Papers_Cover_FinalThe other day, I mentioned the Humble Bundle’s plans to expand its e-book offerings. Today it turns out that the Humble Bundle’s closest competitor in the world of e-book bundles has just come out with another one itself. For the next three weeks, StoryBundle is offering its “Epic Fantasy” bundle on a semi-pay-what-you-want basis. The minimum payment is $3 for six DRM-free multiformat e-books, and if you pay at least $12 you get three more. The base-level donation books are The Sacrifice by Kristine Kathryn Rusch Spirit Walker by David Farland ...

DRM in your coffee? The infection spreads
March 4, 2014 | 9:15 am

drm in your coffeeHere's an interesting twist on the whole 'DRM is evil' debate: Keurig, makers of a popular coffee maker brand, is considering implementing DRM into its next model which will block users from purchasing refills from the secondary market. As this Techdirt article explains: "As with computer printers, getting the device in the home is simply a gateway to where the real money is: refills. But Keurig has faced the ‘problem’ in recent years of third-party pod refills that often retail for 5-25% less than what Keurig charges. " I'm not sure how effective this will be. The Beloved is more into the...

Humble Bundle plans to expand e-book, audiobook offerings
March 3, 2014 | 8:25 pm

humblelogoRemember the Humble E-Book Bundles? Humble’s done a couple of them (not counting the ones by other bundle sites) plus an audiobook bundle, and wants to do more. Calvin Reid has a great article at Publishers Weekly looking at the Humble Bundle e-book program in depth. It has some interesting facts. It turns out that the first two pay-what-you-want Humble E-Book Bundles were actually organized by Cory Doctorow. Not a big surprise given their DRM-free nature. The problem was that DRM-free nature meant Macmillan (whose Tor subsidiary had already gone DRM-free) was the only Big Five publisher willing to...

Adobe’s change of DRM could end old e-readers’ compatibility with e-book stores
February 3, 2014 | 5:27 pm

Here’s a story Nate covered over on The Digital Reader, that could be important in months to come. Adobe is changing up its DRM format, and as of July, will stop supporting the old format altogether. Any new EPUB e-books sold with Adobe DRM on them will be incompatible with older readers unless they have been upgraded. This really is a pretty big deal. Pretty much every e-reader sold besides Kindle and Nook used Adobe ADEPT e-book DRM. (And I seem to recall even Nook could support ADEPT DRM even though B&N used a slightly different DRM format for...

Library audiobooks to go DRM-free on Overdrive
January 24, 2014 | 12:19 pm

The mp3 audiobook market has been DRM-free for years, and at least part of the audiobook market is going to follow suit. OverDrive, the leading ebook and audiobook supplier for libraries and institutions, has announced that they're phasing out the WMA format audiobooks in favor of DRM-free mp3. Aside from minor vendors like Playaway, OverDrive effectively is the the library audiobook market so today's news is a big deal. Audiobooks in general, and Amazon/Audible in particular, are the last holdouts for DRM in audio. The mp3 music market is DRM-free, and there are even a couple audiobook retailers that have gone...

Surprise! Most consumers buy e-books from a single retailer
January 22, 2014 | 5:33 am

At Digital Book World, book industry research firm Codex Group has some news for you that will completely shock and surprise you: in a survey of just over 2,000 people who buy e-books, 86% buy them from only one retailer. Those who buy books from Amazon tend to keep buying them from Amazon, etc. Oh, wait. Maybe that won’t shock and surprise you after all. Maybe it’s completely what you expected given that most major e-book vendors have erected walled gardens around their content to keep you from taking it out to another garden. If you buy books from...

Hugh Howey’s prescription for fixing the Big Five: Become more like the indies
January 13, 2014 | 1:53 pm

hughhoweyHugh Howey, author of the Kindle Direct-published Wool SF series that was optioned by Ridley Scott, has a very interesting pair of blog posts on how he would “fix” the publishing industry, or at least one particular company in the publishing industry. As a thought experiment, he lays down what he would do in his first and second months if he were picked as HarperCollins’s new Chief Executive Officer. (He chose the publisher at random; it could as easily have been any of the others of the Big Five.) And while he does tend to overlook that these changes would...