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Old 11-20-2012, 11:35 AM   #1
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To DRM or not to DRM, that is the question

I open this topic in some trepidation because I'm concerned it might stir up some acrimony

My co-author and I are about to publish the kindle version of our first book. Amazon wants to know if we want to enable DRM on it. Please will you help us decide?

What reasons can you suggest for or against enabling DRM?

Thanks for your advice.
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Old 11-20-2012, 11:52 AM   #2
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You'll probably find most of the responses here to be anti-DRM.

Pros: MAY help prevent some casual sharing between family members and friends, if that's something you want to stop.

Cons: Any time a book gets locked down with DRM it has the potential to cause problems where the legitimate purchaser can't access what they paid for.


Note that while it may prevent some small scale sharing (such as sharing with a family member) it won't prevent the book from being posted on files sharing sites, IRC, torrents or the like. It's a matter of a few seconds for someone who wants to post the book to such places to remove the DRM after buying your book.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:00 PM   #3
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It really doesn't matter either way. Kindle DRM can be trivially removed. If it makes you sleep better at night to think that your book is "protected", have DRM. If you're a realist, don't. One thing's for sure - it certainly won't prevent piracy.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:01 PM   #4
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I put all the reasons that I don't use DRM in a blog post:
http://russellphillips.wordpress.com...-dont-use-drm/
Personally, I don't like it for all the reasons in the above post, but if you choose to use it, that's your choice. At least you're trying to make an informed choice, and whether I agree with your eventual decision or not, I laud you for that.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:03 PM   #5
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Against. If someone had a Nook, Kobo, Sony, etc. ereader, they can still buy your book and convert it to read on their brand of ereader.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:12 PM   #6
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MrB - I can understand your trepidation as this has been a very HOT topic here on MR.

Here's my two cents and I am sure that others will weigh in. I always deDRM my books using tools that can be found to do this. The primary and ONLY reason I do this is so once I have legally (let me underscore legally) purchase the book, I consider it mine and therefore, I refuse to be locked into an particular format.

Therefore, I always deDRM my books so today if I am reading on a Kindle and tomorrow I decide I want a Nook, my books are device agnostic.

Ultimately, as the author the decision rest with you. Good Luck!
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:36 PM   #7
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My husband chose not to include DRM on his ebooks for the reasons already presented.

You may already know this, but I just thought I'd mention that once the decision is made, you cannot change your mind unless you completely republish the ebook (new ASIN). You're wise to carefully consider the DRM choice before pressing that "publish" button.
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Old 11-20-2012, 10:46 PM   #8
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Boneshaker by Cherie Priest included a notice near the front that the eBook was being published without DRM and included a polite request to honor the author's copyrights.

I don't steal books anyway but I appreciated the thought. It was rather strongly worded on rereading.


It goes like this:

"The author and publisher have provided this e-book to you without Digital Rights Management software (DRM) applied so that you can enjoy reading it on your personal devices. This e-book is for your personal use only. You may not print or post this e-book, or make this e-book publicly available in any way. You may not copy, reproduce or upload this e-book, other than to read it on one of your personal devices.

"Copyright infringement is against the law. If you believe the copy of this e-book you are reading infringes on the author’s copyright, please notify the publisher at: us.macmillanusa.com/piracy."

Last edited by 6charlong; 11-20-2012 at 10:55 PM. Reason: added copy of infringement notice
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Old 11-20-2012, 10:53 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrB View Post
I open this topic in some trepidation because I'm concerned it might stir up some acrimony

My co-author and I are about to publish the kindle version of our first book. Amazon wants to know if we want to enable DRM on it. Please will you help us decide?

What reasons can you suggest for or against enabling DRM?

Thanks for your advice.
If I was to buy your eBook and it has DRM, I can strip the DRM as fast as it takes to load it into Calibre. That's pretty fast. There's no reason to use DRM except to hinder some of your customers legally purchasing your eBook.
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Old 11-21-2012, 01:35 AM   #10
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I agree with the previous comments. My main reading device is a Sony, and I only buy books from Amazon that I really want and can't get elsewhere. After I've downloaded them to my Kindle 3 it takes me perhaps a minute to load them on to my Sony.

I agree that the 'average street user' neither knows about nor cares about DRM, and doesn't know how to remove it. You're not likely to lose their custom if you put DRM on your ebook, and you're not likely to lose the custom of people who know the magic incantations to remove DRM. But you might lose the custom of people who resent having you or Amazon control what we do with ebooks we have paid for.

I suggest that there is very little if any advantage to you to put DRM on your ebook, and some disadvantage.

Like every one else who has responded I have never sold an ebook from which I have removed the DRM. So there has never been any loss to the author or even to Amazon.
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Old 11-21-2012, 02:29 AM   #11
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Weigh the pros and cons.

DRM: It prevents file sharing. Actually wait, no, it doesn't, because in 2 minutes DRM can be stripped. It will make some people unhappy simply because the DRM is there that they need to remove (even though it takes a few minutes, some are so very anti-DRM for reasons already stated, they mainly want to be able to read the book they paid for on whatever device they want, that they'll go elsewhere to purchase the book or even pass on the book entirely if it's their only option). People with multiple readers in their family will have reason to strip it immediately after purchase. I have paperbacks that I've shared with probably 10 family members and friends, why shouldn't we be able to do the same with the e-version?

No-DRM: You don't offend anyone who dislikes DRM. People who purchase books normally from Amazon will still be able to purchase their books and load them the same way as always on their Kindles, they won't even know the difference. Where's the downside to no-DRM?

All things considered, I don't see one advantage to putting DRM on a book. Not one. No DRM makes everyone happy.

Last edited by Ripplinger; 11-21-2012 at 08:44 PM. Reason: Because I spell like a putz at 2am.
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Old 11-21-2012, 06:52 PM   #12
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Thumbs up I have been convinced!

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you very much for taking the time to inform me of your thoughts on DRM.

As a result of the very cogent points that you have made I shall not be associating DRM with our e-book.

Best wishes and
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Old 11-22-2012, 12:18 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrB View Post
Ladies and gentlemen, thank you very much for taking the time to inform me of your thoughts on DRM.

As a result of the very cogent points that you have made I shall not be associating DRM with our e-book.

Best wishes and
Let us know when you publish it. Post a link.
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Old 11-22-2012, 12:23 PM   #14
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Good to see you went the non-DRM route.
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