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Old 04-26-2010, 12:48 AM   #61
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And DawnFalcon, by your reasoning when you buy, on Amazon for example, with a gift certificate you never even misrepresent yourself in any way.
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Old 04-26-2010, 01:30 PM   #62
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Why are you assuming that "they" would have anything to do with it? The rights holders have every right to bring an action against you.
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Old 04-26-2010, 09:45 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by DawnFalcon View Post
Why are you assuming that "they" would have anything to do with it? The rights holders have every right to bring an action against you.
And they have 1000 reasons not to do so -- they are taking on paying customers! That would create a lot of wonderful publicity for them. By your reasoning even all books an American downloads while abroad would be illegal copies. And let us say they sue you, what are the damages they can claim? They have actually profited.
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Old 04-26-2010, 11:49 PM   #64
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The RIAA have 1000 reasons not to sue any of their customers, and that hasn't stopped them for a moment. The Agency Cartel are making precisely the same noises these days, too.

And if an American downloads something outside America, then usually he has to consider aspect of both American and local copyright law...it's VERY hard to get a legal copy in that situation, yes.

As to damages, "actually profited" really really doesn't matter. The item is infringing, and it's cost is used to calculate damages as-normal. The financial penalties for infringement are nothing to do with what anyone actually paid...
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:09 AM   #65
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Whatever the legal position, if anything is a victimless crime, this is.
If a paper book is available from Amazon UK, I will buy it from them. I only buy from the US, if there is no alternative.
If I had a choice, I would also buy UK ebooks. If there was an alternative to bypassing geo restrictions to buy an ebook I want to read, I'd use it.
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Old 04-27-2010, 07:55 AM   #66
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Whatever the legal position, if anything is a victimless crime, this is.
If a paper book is available from Amazon UK, I will buy it from them. I only buy from the US, if there is no alternative.
If I had a choice, I would also buy UK ebooks. If there was an alternative to bypassing geo restrictions to buy an ebook I want to read, I'd use it.
That is how I see it. I know that DawnFalcon wants to convince us that circumventing regional restrictions is worse than going to the darknet. That seems like saying buying a bottle of liquor with a fake ID while below the legal age limit is worse than walking into the store with a gun and just taking it.

According to the letter of the law there are some minor issues, but our actions follow the spirit of the law. We bought by paying full price to an authorized distributor. Sort of like a gray import. If you buy a car in another country and ship it back home you have not "stolen" it. Or my reader; Irex doesn't want US sellers to sell the DR800SG to me, but I found a way to get one. So, am I not the rightful owner now? Contractual issues between the US seller and the manufacturer/publisher do not concern me. And I would bet that nobody will ever be successfully prosecuted for having an illegal copy, after having obtained it this way. If they ever come after anyone who paid for the book the press would have a field day.

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Old 04-27-2010, 08:01 AM   #67
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Based on another thread here on MR on the same subject, my understanding is that the author (or author's agent) contracts with the publisher within a limited geographical area so that he/she can also contract with another publisher in a different area and perhaps make more money. Say Author contracts with PubUS and limits PubUS from selling anywhere but in the United States. He then contracts with PubCanada and PubFrance and PubEngland, limiting each to selling in their respective countries. PubCanada doesn't need to worry about competition sales from PubUS. PubFrance and PubEngland don't compete with one another. Everyone wins.

This, of course, is related to pbooks. It makes sense, sort of, if one is thinking about going to the local bookstore and buying a book. It loses all sense when one considers online purchasing, whether of pbooks or of ebooks.

My puzzlement is in that Amazon or another online reseller might sell a pbook but not the same book in ebook format, stating geographical rights. It would seem to me that if the publisher has limited geographical rights, it applies to both formats. Unless, of course, it is a different publisher handling the ebook... or the same publisher under a separate contract arrangement.

Nevertheless, I do believe the whole geographical rights thing is a holdover from pbook contracts that the authors/agents and publishers have not fully thought out. By limiting sales of ebooks geographically, they basically are cutting off their own noses, so to speak. Hopefully someone will see the light. I know it is a whole new world of publishing, but gosh, I've been reading ebooks since at least 2000, one would think in 10 years they might have realized a thing or two.

My thanks to alvico for posting her website - her books look interesting, and there are some really good links there, particularly http://www.ebooksjustpublished.com/ I'm all over DRM-free! That site has one of her books free till the end of April - I'm going to have to get it of course, and then assuming I enjoy the read, buy her others. Business a la Baen. Works well for me.
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Old 04-27-2010, 08:18 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by HansTWN View Post
That is how I see it. I know that DawnFalcon wants to convince us that circumventing regional restrictions is worse than going to the darknet
Legally, the situation is that it is worse. I don't attempt to speak to the moral aspects.

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According to the letter of the law there are some minor issues, but our actions follow the spirit of the law.We bought by paying full price to an authorized distributor. Sort of like a gray import.
Incorrect. The purchase location is your PC, not with the importer, and even dealing with an importer you need to show you're permitted to import the goods. Again, I have a written opinion on this, do you? Also, the letter of the law is what is being pushed by big media in many other cases, it's "spirit" is quite irrelevant for civil lawsuits and in UK copyright law, the "spirit" from precedent is that paying for goods you know you not entitled to obtain is not a mitigating factor in any way.

My position is quite clear: If you try hard not to sell me a book, I won't buy it, or take any legal risks whatsoever acquiring it. Or rather, I'll get a second hand paper copy, &biteme if you don't like that because I'd of happily bought a new ebook without DRM and for a reasonable price*. If such was available.

(*Yes, I buy Baen eARC's. No, your book probably won't get me to pay the same amount out. Try building a community to match Baen's and a decent series and release it six months before the paper book, and I'll think about it)

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Old 04-27-2010, 08:41 AM   #69
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I know your position on this, and am not trying to convince you to do otherwise. However, the question also remains if the law is the same everywhere.

Besides, the situation is quite complicated. The publisher has contract with the seller not to sell to non-US customers. But does that mean that any such sales that do take place are illegal, meaning ownership is not being transferred? The seller may be doing something illegal, but he can claim a good faith effort if he took reasonable precautions. Would the buyer aquire a legal license if the seller knew the buyer was from outside the US and the buyer never claimed he was a resident?

And there are many similar situations in the physical world. Let us say a seller from France sells a car to you in the UK -- and ships it to you from France. He has a contract that he is not allowed to sell outside of France. You take care of the import formalities into the UK. You are the legal owner of the car, aren't you?

How would the situation be if you traveled to the US and downloaded the file while being over there? What if you use a VPN? Aren't you actually using a computer that is physically located in the US?

In the end, why should a contractual agreement between the seller and his supplier bind the buyer?
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Old 04-27-2010, 09:08 AM   #70
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I only claim to be pointing out UK law.

Thing is, by buying, you are agreeing with the site to their ToS, which included obeying their regional restrictions. And for first sales (only), the copyright holder can and does have the right to define the conditions under which you can obtain an authorised copy - this right is sub-licensed to the site on condition that they uphold regional restrictions.

It's licence law, not contract.

"And there are many similar situations in the physical world."

They are simply not applicable. The point of sale is not the same! Sheesh. I'll start using bigger text if you try and use that example again, because it's a completely different situation.

Go argue with the laws which make the point of sale your PC and not the servers.

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Old 04-27-2010, 09:54 AM   #71
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Old 04-27-2010, 11:06 AM   #72
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I am rolling my eyes at repeatedly being told that the book companies will act sensibly (evidence: The RIAA suing people, and their current massive efforts to distort the world's IP law) and that UK law dosn't create issues if you knowingly bypass georestrictions (evidence: A written legal opinion).

Oh, and let's not forget trying to insist that import law works the same way when the point of sale is your PC, or the point of sale is some exporter in another country (Just plain lol).
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:57 PM   #73
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It would seem to me that if the publisher has limited geographical rights, it applies to both formats.
Often, but not always. Every aspect of publishing *can* be negotiated separately; some publishers by e-rights in the same areas as their print rights; some buy nonexclusive e-rights (yay Baen!); some buy world e-rights because they can convince authors to hand them over.

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Incorrect. The purchase location is your PC, not with the importer, and even dealing with an importer you need to show you're permitted to import the goods.
Says who? Is there a law somewhere that declares where digital purchases take place? (Real question. I know how ebook stores are doing business; I haven't seen any proof that they're doing so because of laws rather than corporate policies.)

Why is the purchase location "your PC," and not "the location of the server from which the purchase order originated?" If I log into a proxy server in another country, why isn't that the location of purchase? After all, my PC isn't connecting directly to the site; it's going through any number of routers to get there.

My PC is the final *destination* of the goods being sold--but I'm not required to hand over my address when I walk into a bookstore, nor do I pay sales tax based on my home address when I'm buying in another city or state. The purchase takes place where the money transfer happens, not where I'm going to take my purchase after I buy it.

If I log into a server in another country, and use a bank in that country to hand over the money, why isn't that just as legitimate as taking a train to Canada to buy a book that's not sold in US stores?
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:03 PM   #74
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My PC is the final *destination* of the goods being sold--but I'm not required to hand over my address when I walk into a bookstore, nor do I pay sales tax based on my home address when I'm buying in another city or state. The purchase takes place where the money transfer happens, not where I'm going to take my purchase after I buy it.
Is that according to some law or not? Otherwise why do you assume that the money transfer place decide the purchase place? Why could it not be the place where the transfer of the item you have bought take place?
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Old 04-27-2010, 01:27 PM   #75
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Is that according to some law or not? Otherwise why do you assume that the money transfer place decide the purchase place? Why could it not be the place where the transfer of the item you have bought take place?
For physical items, it's the location of the people taking the money; online & phone purchases are listed as occurring in the seller's location, even if they ship the item to another state.

For digital items, the "location of transfer of item" is almost impossible to identify--is that the place where the originator's server is? One of the servers used in the transfer? The final destination? (If it's downloaded to a third-party PC in another country, does that change the purchase?)
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