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Old 02-23-2012, 06:24 PM   #208
KentE
...still a Zealot
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Posts: 252
Karma: 319949
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Kansas City, Kansas, USA
Device: Palm Pixi & PC
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sil_liS View Post
The libraries couldn't say no. It has been repeated over and over that Amazon has the biggest market share in the US, and most ereaders are kindles. If the libraries would have said that they are not going to lend to Amazon because they are going to see what you borrowed the consumers would have been pissed off at the libraries. On top of that siding with the publishers when they are the ones doing their best to limit library lending seems counterproductive.
Actually, I don't see any reason why the libraries couldn't say "no". The library ebook system was developed without any participation by Amazon/Kindle until very recently, and it certainly didn't prevent library ebooks from becoming a viable platform. No one with a Kindle could previously read a library book, without illegal manipulation of the file. (as far as I know, anyway.)
At the very least, libraries should insist on an "informed consent" model for ebooks, with a notification that checking out a book in a specific format (.azw, Kindle) will result in your personal information being transmitted to a 3rd party that will use it for direct marketing. It's worth noting that no similar personal data transfer exists for books checked out in Epub format.
With a unified effort, library systems could have prevented this from happening. At some level, Amazon had a lot to lose by not participating in the library system, and I think they finally figured that out. I shopped for an ereader for my wife 14 months ago, and a Kindle was not even a consideration, because it was useless for library borrowing. If I'd purchased an ereader at that time, it would also have locked Amazon out of most ebook purchases I made for the life of that ereader. As it turned out, I waited til this Christmas to buy her the ereader, and picked a Kindle since it did give me library options, and we liked the ease of transfer. I'm upset that 2 out of the 3 library systems in my metro area had to drop, at least temporarily, all ebook access, and that a number of publishers will no longer provide new ebooks to library systems (at least library systems using the Overdrive system). I've done enough reading to be aware that this is a way more complicated issue than just being upset at Penguin, etc. I'm also upset with Overdrive & Amazon, because I believe they're as much of the problem as anyone.
I'm astonished that so few here have a problem with the data-harvesting. My phone is on the do-not-call list for tele-marketing, I don't read junk mail. I'm tired of having my email box filled with spam. It's not that I have anything to 'hide', I just don't approve of my every action being used as a 'marketing opportunity' by someone, and I definitely don't approve of hidden 'opt-in' actions by marketers.
Imagine this: let's say Mastercard cuts a deal with Xmart. Every time you make a purchase an item that Xmart stocks, whether or not you bought it at Xmart, your personal data is transferred to Xmart, and you start getting email marketing from them. Anytime you pay for a prescription or doctors visit with your Mastercard, Xmart sends you tie-in promo material for stuff they sell that might be related. Any problem with this? You might not object, and that's fine. I'd be using my Visa card, and the Mastercard would be getting sliced into ribbons (even if I had to use a USB cable!).
Kent E
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