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HarperCollins Wants Library EBooks to Self-Destruct After 26 Loans 181

An anonymous reader writes: "HarperCollins has decided to change their agreement with e-book distributor OverDrive [and other distributors, too]. They forced OverDrive, which is a main e-book distributor for libraries, to agree to terms so that HarperCollins e-books will only be licensed for checkout 26 times. Librarians have blown up over this, calling for a boycott of HarperCollins, breaking the DRM on e-books -- basically doing anything to let HarperCollins and other publishers know they consider this abuse." Cory Doctorow, who wrote TFA, says: "For the record, all of my HarperCollins ebooks are also available as DRM-free Creative Commons downloads. And as bad as HarperCollins' terms are, they're still better than Macmillan's, my US/Canadian publisher, who don't allow any library circulation of their ebook titles."
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HarperCollins Wants Library EBooks to Self-Destruct After 26 Loans

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  • OK....... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 25, 2011 @08:39PM (#35319216)

    I agree to their terms but I will be using loan money. It ceases to function after 28 days and gets returned to me.

    No deal?? ok I'll just pirate them. You lose.

  • by clang_jangle ( 975789 ) on Friday February 25, 2011 @08:41PM (#35319240) Journal
    I've been reading ebooks on my mobile devices for at least six years. It's hardly an "untested fad".
  • by PopeRatzo ( 965947 ) * on Friday February 25, 2011 @08:58PM (#35319386) Journal

    This is just another attack from the corporate powers against what is known as "The Commons". They won't be happy until they've destroyed any social institution that doesn't function to create profits for corporations. From prisons to libraries, there have been institutions in our society that we hold "in common". Public libraries, public schools, public safety (police and fire departments) even parks are all facing coordinated assaults on their very existence as public institutions. Corporations hate these things because people make use of them without enriching the economic elite. Hell, they don't even believe you should be able to lend something you bought to a neighbor or friend.

    It can only happen if we go along with it.

    What Harper Collins wants to do, what the RIAA and MPAA want to do, make a great case for civil disobedience, which in this case might take the form of "piracy" (an inaccurate label). Why would you want to buy a book from someone who holds you in such contempt?

    And it is definitely possible to support the artists without supporting the corporations. It just takes a little more thought and effort.

  • by jenningsthecat ( 1525947 ) on Friday February 25, 2011 @09:05PM (#35319440)

    1) Print
    2) Scan
    3) OCR
    4) PDF
    5) Lend at will, as many times as you please.

    Although it isn't legal, in this case I think it could and should be regarded as simple civil disobedience. Prohibition was brought down largely by people's flagrant disregard for it. If enough people thumb their noses at this foolishness, then perhaps we can all stop fighting about obsolete business models and get on with taking full advantage of the things our shiny new technology offers us.

  • by TaoPhoenix ( 980487 ) <> on Friday February 25, 2011 @09:24PM (#35319614) Journal

    Actually, you might be on to an idea.

    Can we contact the agents for Ray Bradbury for permission to crowd-source Fahrenheit 451?

  • by peragrin ( 659227 ) on Friday February 25, 2011 @09:29PM (#35319670)

    No licensing? I suggest you take a good look at what libraries have to do to not be considered stores.

    Also Libraries are trying to do everything they can to get people to visit them. With the internet they aren't used as much anymore.

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." -- Will Rogers