Just launched, Amazon now let you “lend” Kindle books. A fab feature, but sadly crippled in this (initial?) form.
1) You need to initiate the process from Amazon.com — you can’t do it from a Kindle
2) Publishers have the right to disable lending, and a quick scan through my Kindle purchases show that most large publishers have blanket blocks in place.
3) Loans are currently limited to 14 days, and you can lend a book once and only once. Publishers currently cannot adjust these limits.
Despite these gripes, this is clearly a big step in the right direction. Hopefully this is just Amazon’s first stab at shifting the digital-media-lending Overton window.
A pair of interesting Python scripts. One of which grabs your decryption key from the Windows version of “Adobe Digital Editions”, the other using the exported key to decrypt legitimately purchased eBooks and output DRM-free copies.
I imagine if one were to use them in conjunction with some sort of ePub -> Mobi converter (such as the open source “calibre”), one could purchase eBooks which are not available for the Kindle, conduct some sort of potentially illegal (Fuck you DMCA) wizardry, and enjoy reading said eBooks on the portable device of one’s choosing.
Unrelated: Currently reading “The Damned Utd” by David Peace on my Kindle.
Amazon’s un-DRMed 256kbps MP3 store launches. It’s got the full EMI and indie catalogues that iTunes has DRM-free, plus the Universal catalogue.
There’s an optional downloader for Windows and Mac that allows you to queue up entire albums and import them into iTunes automagically, but you can also download individual tracks without any software.
My only problem with it? The first track I tried buying — “Sweet Caroline” by Neil Diamond — turned out to be a live recording without being marked as such. So now? I get to test Amazon’s refund policy!
Apple will be selling DRM-free music from EMI next month. Pitched as “higher-quality” (256kbps AAC) to justify the price increase. The interesting statistic once this launches is going to be the number of people who choose the lower-cost DRMed version.
Steve Jobs publicly calls for the record companies to drop their requirement for DRM on online music sales: “Imagine a world where every online store sells DRM-free music encoded in open licensable formats. […] This is clearly the best alternative for consumers, and Apple would embrace it in a heartbeat.”
It appears that someone has found a way to extract the encryption keys for HD-DVD discs, then rip them. This doesn’t render the whole of AACS broken (it was designed to work around broken software), but until the movie industry makes its move, all HD-DVD discs out there today can be ripped.
Could be interesting — DVDJon reverse engineered Apple’s DRM, and is looking to license it to other companies wanting to sell DRMed tracks. Of course, Apple can break it again with a firmware update, so who knows where this is going.
I’ve finally had a chance to test this with files downloaded from Napster and Rhapsody’s subscription services, and it does what it says on the tin. The question of interest: If this could be chained to a transcoder that automagically converted downloads to MP3s that can be played on an iPod, would it cause more customers to sign up for PlaysForSure providers, and damage sales at the iTunes Music Store?
“Our position is simple: DRM doesn?t add any value for the artist, label (who are selling DRM-free music every day ? the Compact Disc), or consumer, the only people it adds value to are the technology companies who are interested in locking consumers to a particular technology platform.” Hells yeah!
“The industry’s idea of a “perfect” DRM scheme is one that is not controlled by either Apple or Microsoft, and which gives only them (the record industry) complete control over what users can do with their downloads. Such a scheme does not exist, and it does not exist because it isn’t possible.”
BusinessWeek article on the troubles facing early adopters of HD-DVD & Blu-Ray. I reckon Comcast & DirecTv are going to win the battle to bring High Def movies into peoples’ homes. The days of shiny discs are drawing to a close.
Well, it’s the law. Apple either have to open up their DRM to other devices and music stores, or shutdown the iTunes Music Store in France. I’ll put $50 on the latter. (Update: OK, it’s not the law yet: It has to pass France’s Senate yet. Stupid multi-house parliamentary systems)
Yahoo exec plants idea in record labels’ heads that DRM’d music is useless. Hope he can make it take root. The only people benefitting from DRM currently are Apple (getting iPod lock-in) and Microsoft (selling their technology to everyone else). Everyone else loses.
As a Rhapsody subscriber, I’m able to listen to only nine out of fourteen tracks from the Beck album ‘Midnite Vultures’ without forking out another $10. What idiot in charge of licensing decided that ‘Mixed Bizness” was fine for free download, but that the excellent “Debra” is blocked? Record companies: You’re morons, and this is why no-one uses your crappy “legal” alternatives to file-sharing.
*Jawdroppingly* idiotic rant from Cory, trying to draw anti-DRM points from a completely non-DRM-related security flaw in iTunes. Is it my imagination, or is his signal to ranting-clueless-fuckwit ratio dropping of late?
This is an archive of groovmother.com, the old blog run by Rod Begbie — A Scottish geek who lives in San Francisco, CA.