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Old 02-16-2011, 03:44 PM   #61
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Is VAT only 8% in Norway? I was under the impression that EU law required the full rate of VAT to be charged on eBooks? (eg we pay 20% VAT on eBooks here in the UK)
Normal VAT is 25%, food VAT is 12.5% (if you buy and take it out of the store, if not you pay 25%...) and a cultural VAT is 8%
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Old 02-16-2011, 03:52 PM   #62
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The whole story that if you buy an ebook for personal use and don't sell or distribute it (as that takes profits away from the author), that noone need know or care that you broke the DRM since you bought it and only keep it for yourself and therefore ought to be able to format/fix/edit it how you want?

That whole story?



I don't think the keyboard is "cheap." You might prefer the touch screen, but it makes the barrier to entry higher for prospective ebook buying customers of Sony books than for Kindle books.



yes, Barnes and Noble is everywhere here.



Okay, so there are Sony stores here, though they're few and far between, and I've never seen one in my life.



Also, if my wife's Kindle breaks and we receive a replacement free of charge, including shipping within 2 days of my calling Amazon CS about it, I'd say I don't need a local Amazon store.
http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/...sony_retailers

That is a complete list of Sony retailers. It's a huge list.
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Old 02-16-2011, 04:07 PM   #63
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http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/...sony_retailers

That is a complete list of Sony retailers. It's a huge list.
I guess that would be great if I was looking for a PS3 or a camera.
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Old 02-16-2011, 04:09 PM   #64
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The bitching that Amazon is not willing to sell EPub while ignoring that Sony, BN, and Kobo do not sell Mobi is almost amusing but really more annoying. Amazon is held to a different standard then the other bookstores. It is an old, boring, tired argument.
Yep. I own both, I like both, though I find the Kindle easier to hold (I love me some keyboard). But I get really tired of the "Amazon sucks because I say so" argument.
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Old 02-16-2011, 05:55 PM   #65
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I can say the same thing about Sony, BN, and Kobo. They work really hard to make sure I cannot read their books on my Kindle . . .

The bitching that Amazon is not willing to sell EPub while ignoring that Sony, BN, and Kobo do not sell Mobi is almost amusing but really more annoying. Amazon is held to a different standard then the other bookstores. It is an old, boring, tired argument.

It is an argument that is made all that much more tired when you flat out say that you can and will remove DRM if you come across a situation where it is warrented. The decision to remove DRM and convert is one that each person has to make based on their understanding of the law in their country, their ethical barometer, and their level of technical skill.

I am glad that you enjoy using the library. I know folks with Kindles who use the library as well. It is a matter of making decisions that the individual is comfortable with. They have saved themselves a ton of money borrowing library books.

It is not a black and white world.
Actually this case IS pretty much black and white -

Amazon - BAD
To put ANY kind of protected content on a Kindle you have to use Amazons AZW formant NOT "MOBI" not "PDF" (which are only supported in unprotected form). Amazon doesn't allow others to have access to the DRM code needed on favorable terms, and given Amazon's LITIGIOUS JERK track record with so called "One Click" shopping (did you know that Amazon invented both the number "1" -AND- the "left mouse button"?), other companies just aren't willing to risk reverse engineering Amazons DRM for commercial purposes. This leaves only a patheticly small group of smaller struggling publishing houses who are willing to sell Non-DRM-Protected books, and though I support their efforts, virtually ALL of the mainstream authors that most folks actually read are represented by publishers who insist on DRM protection.

Everybody Else - GOOD
B&N, Borders, Sony, Kobo, and Google, as well as virtually EVERYONE ELSE ON THE PLANET, now use and support the new non-proprietary world wide open-standard EPUB format, with DRM provide by a neutral third party, Adobe, who will license their technology on reasonable terms to anyone. So reasonable in fact, that libraries can afford it even for 'freebie' library book check out. I can read books purchased through Borders, Kobo, or Google, not only on their respective devices, but also on a Sony reader, or a B&N Nook. I can't yet buy B&N books and read them on my Sony, but Adobe and B&N have already agreed to sort this out, so that it should be possible in the future.

Think that Amazon's going to win this battle? Think again. There was a time when it was the other way around and it was Sony that thought that they could be arrogant jerks - Anybody remember the Betamax?

This time around Sony has clearly learned their lesson, and they have my full support.

Last edited by delphin; 02-16-2011 at 06:09 PM.
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Old 02-16-2011, 06:33 PM   #66
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You can put BN books on your Sony without converting? That is news to me. Oh, right, there is that update that they keep talking about but not releasing. And when they do Sony is sure to release an update to all of its existing readers because Sony is so good about releasing updates.

You can put IBooks on your Sony without converting? That is news to me. Heck, it is the one DRM that has not been broken.

Last I checked none of those readers sell books that can be read on a Kindle.

Sony is the only device that you mention that predates the Kindle. So BN, Kobo, and Apple all chose a format and DRM that could not be read on the most popular reader at the time, the Kindle, but Amazon is the one at fault. Using your logic, Amazon had chosen EPub and BN, Kobo, and Apple all chose Mobi, Amazon would still be bad because the other e-readers chose a different format after the K1 was being sold and just before the K2 was announced.

So Amazon needs to choose a time machine, go back in time, and change its format choice so it chooses the "right" format before the other e-readers are announced and repeat this loop endlessly because its competition will choose a different format and DRM.

None of the companies are bad. None of the companies are good. They are businesses trying to make a profit. BN, Kobo, and Apple all chose EPub because they did not want their customers buying from Amazon. It was a business decision.

And since removing DRM is really easy I am not worried about any of this.
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Old 02-16-2011, 10:38 PM   #67
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You can put BN books on your Sony without converting? That is news to me. Oh, right, there is that update that they keep talking about but not releasing. And when they do Sony is sure to release an update to all of its existing readers because Sony is so good about releasing updates.

You can put IBooks on your Sony without converting? That is news to me. Heck, it is the one DRM that has not been broken.

Last I checked none of those readers sell books that can be read on a Kindle.
Sony just did an update on the PRS-950, and has upgraded their previous series readers to support the current EPUB DRM, something they weren't even obligated to do, so yes I do expect that this update will be available.

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Sony is the only device that you mention that predates the Kindle. So BN, Kobo, and Apple all chose a format and DRM that could not be read on the most popular reader at the time, the Kindle, but Amazon is the one at fault. Using your logic, Amazon had chosen EPub and BN, Kobo, and Apple all chose Mobi, Amazon would still be bad because the other e-readers chose a different format after the K1 was being sold and just before the K2 was announced.

So Amazon needs to choose a time machine, go back in time, and change its format choice so it chooses the "right" format before the other e-readers are announced and repeat this loop endlessly because its competition will choose a different format and DRM.
It's a little hard to make any sense out of this, but let's assume that you are trying to imply with your 'time machine' comment that Amazon just couldn't have done it any other way.

No time machine needed, just the willingness to SUPPORT your products and update them to keep pace with current technology.

I see your point about Amazon having already dug themselves a hole by picking a preparatory format first, so now they just couldn't possibly change, yada, yada, yada

Really, is that so? Tell this to Sony, who did EXACTLY THIS, not only adding EPUB support to their original proprietary LRF format in ALL their new PRS readers, but also UPDATING their older products to support EPUB.

Then they converted their online Sony Store to also use the newer Format.

But, [whine] Amazon has sooooooo many more books than Sony, they could never, never, never convert them all! Really? Tell this to Google, the only company with MORE titles available than Amazon, who quickly converted and NOW OFFERS THEM IN EPUB FORMAT.

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None of the companies are bad. None of the companies are good. They are businesses trying to make a profit. BN, Kobo, and Apple all chose EPub because they did not want their customers buying from Amazon. It was a business decision.
Not bad? I've heard that Amazon's new motto is -

"Don't do evil? Sorry, you have us confused with the other guys!"

Actually my main beef isn't with Amazon as a whole, just with the Kindle and Kindle Store. I would agree that if the Kindle Store worked like the rest of Amazon, with vendors competing side by side with Amazon to sell you a Kindle book. With private parties competing to sell you their USED Kindle books. Then in that case, I wouldn't mind using Amazon at all.

Until they do, I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. Or more correctly, agree to agree, because they agree they want to play these B.S. proprietary games, and I agree I WON'T SHOP THERE.

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And since removing DRM is really easy I am not worried about any of this.
Thanks SOOOO much for pointing this out.

I just LOVE it when Kindle owners don't want to live with the consequences of their decision to buy a Kindle, and so routinely STRIP DRM to get around the STUPID DESIGNED IN LIMITATIONS of their device, AND THEN BRAG ABOUT IT.

Thanks to this kind of talk, I for one won't be a bit surprised when we wake up one fine morning and find that Adobe, Amazon, and B&N, etc. have found a new nearly unbreakable scheme, and paid off our government to pass even more draconian laws to insure that their nifty new scheme is never broken. (should there actually be a death penalty involved, or is a 50 year prison sentence enough?)

As I have said, the option to strip DRM should be a last resort for exceptional circumstances, not something you should be using on a daily basis to deal with your Swindles designed in issues.

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Old 02-17-2011, 12:05 AM   #68
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I am thrilled that you are happy with your Sony. I am thrilled that folks are happy with their Nooks, Kobos, and IPads. You should be happy with the device that you read on.

I am tired of this bizarre need to deem Amazon evil because they made a business decision that predated the very existance of the Nook, Kobo, and IPad to use Mobi format. I am beyond confused as to how a business decision made by BN, Kobo, and Apple to use EPub, more likely then not because they did not want the people who bought their readers buying their books from Amazon, is not seen as being the real start to the all important format wars.

I am not invested in the format wars, actually most the people on this site are not invested in the format wars, because no matter what happens, I know that I can take my books with me to whatever device I want, in whatever format I want.

I have converted a grand total of 0 books from EPub to Mobi. I have been able to buy everything I read from Amazon or other sites that sell Mobi books. I disagree that stripping DRM is a last resort, I see it as a great way of safe guarding my ebook library. I am not the only one who feels that way, there are more then a few EPub users who feel the same way.

(whispers) There are even EPub users who shop at Amazon. And their are Kindle users who shop a Kobo and BN and Sony. Why? Because they like shopping for good deals and are comfortable with their decision to strip DRM. (/whispers)

When it gets down to it, I see the occasional post from a Kindle user who wants to use the library and is unhappy that they cannot read EPub books. The vast majority of format posts are complaining that Amazon won't sell EPub. That normally includes some great discussion of how Amazon is evil and Kindle users are lemmings or some variation of the theme.

And then I go and find the posts where people are rooting their Nooks so they can download the Kindle for Android App. Or the folks who are talking about stripping DRM so they can buy books at Amazon for their Sony. And the posts about folks who have a Kindle and Nook/Sony/Kobo because they want to read both formats and are not comfortable with stripping DRM.

And I realize that the vast majority of the board gets it. It is about enjoying reading on your device and helping people find the device that they are comfortable with.

Then I vow to do my best to ignore the silly folks who call Amazon evil because they use Mobi and rant about how awful it is and Beta Max vs VHS. And I am normally good for a week or two until someone gets on their Amazon is evil soap box again, ranting and raving, and I feel the need to say

1) There is no format war. Anyone reading these boards can change formats if they want to very easily

2) That Amazon is not the only preventing their books from being read on other e-readers. BN and Apple cannot be read on other EPub devices unless you strip DRM

3) The problem is DRM not format

4) Chill and enjoy your reader. I am happy with mine even if it uses Mobi and the product of an evil company clearly interested in making a profit like all the other ereaer companies out there.
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Old 02-17-2011, 01:05 AM   #69
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I can convert in Calibre and I am very low tech!

But I have struggled with stripping DRM. I have had people try to walk me through it all from behind the scenes [as such] and still have had huge problems. I can do Borders' books only, no-one elses.
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Old 02-17-2011, 04:43 AM   #70
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I am thrilled that you are happy with your Sony. I am thrilled that folks are happy with their Nooks, Kobos, and IPads. You should be happy with the device that you read on . . .

2) That Amazon is not the only preventing their books from being read on other e-readers. BN and Apple cannot be read on other EPub devices unless you strip DRM . . .

I think that potential Sony buyers can rest assured that B&N has already figured out that they need to fix their DRM compatibility issues with other EPUB readers, because having their own Nook readers able to read books from the other guy's bookstores, while B&N can't also sell to those other customers who are using Sony, Kobo, or other e-readers is just plain STUPID.

In effect B&N is currently seeing all the disadvantages of supporting the open EPUB format (you can loose sales to other stores), WITHOUT ALSO SEEING THE ADVANTAGES (B&N being able to sell to customers owning other EPUB compatible readers).

And on the subject of chillin out and enjoying my reader . . .

I do enjoy my Sony. Enjoy it enormously. As I said, I had a chance to check out both the PRS-650 and Kindle 3 before choosing the Sony, and have had no reason to regret my decision.

On the other hand, both my brother in law and sister own Kindle 3s that they purchased months before I bought my Sony, and I can honestly report that when they were both checking out the touch screen interface on my PRS-650, there was this distinct "did I buy the right one?" look on both their faces. I guess it was cruel, because my sister was noticing things like the fact that the Sony actually has a decent audio player built in with a nice GUI interface (she likes to get audio books in MP3 format from the library and the Kindles MP3 player is damn near useless for playing music or non-audible purchased audio books).

No kidding, it was sad to watch.

In the end I felt so bad that I found myself struggling to list all of the things that the Kindle had going for it, or that the Sony was missing.

"PRS-650 doesn't have ANY internet", "Doesn't have that text-to-speech thing where it will read to you either." "And, on the Sony, I don't have as many font options like line spacing like the Kindle..."

That cheered them up a little (but not much)

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Old 02-17-2011, 09:28 AM   #71
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And there are Sony users that have switched to Kindles. Heck, there are two topics from this week discussing the move. It is about finding the e-reader that works best for you. For some folks that is a touchscreen for other folks it is the wireless connection.

Be happy with you have and if you are not feel free to move to another reader.
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Old 02-17-2011, 10:59 AM   #72
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Actually this case is pretty much black and white -

[Rant about how suck Amazon is]

Think that Amazon's going to win this battle? Think again. There was a time when it was the other way around and it was Sony that thought that they could be arrogant jerks - Anybody remember the Betamax?

This time around Sony has clearly learned their lesson, and they have my full support.
Wow. just wow. You'd think Amazon execs had beat you with a stick or something.


also, regarding the Betamax comparison...

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One thing about Amazon Kindle though that I also consider important is the volume of good ebooks. I compare this to Nintendo. Back in the day of the console wars between Nintendo and Sega, Sega had nicer hardware in the Genesis/Megadrive while the NES was still out. However, Nintendo won out. Why? Many people say that it's primarily due to the large library of good games that the NES had.

Same with Kindle. Amazon has the biggest bookstore of quality books, so I still give them the leading edge in this competition.
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Old 02-17-2011, 12:23 PM   #73
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I can convert in Calibre and I am very low tech!

But I have struggled with stripping DRM. I have had people try to walk me through it all from behind the scenes [as such] and still have had huge problems. I can do Borders' books only, no-one elses.
HAve you visited Apprentice Alf's labs? He has some great step by step instructions posted.
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Old 02-17-2011, 03:04 PM   #74
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I'm in Norway and happy with my Kindle 3 (when I went to pick it up at the courier's there was another person there picking up theirs, I felt like part of an ad-hoc movement =) ). I'm considering a Sony myself, for the pdf-support.

However, Norwegian publisers are TEH EVIL. You can't get Norwegian e-books, not even the classics like the Eddas and sagas. The Norw. pulblishers' plan is to bypass ereader-devices altogether and have an app (you see, only iPad counts) that connects to the web. Real renting and no owning of books!

Besides, I do believe that we have the most expensive books in the western world . This is due to the big publishers (3) owning the big bookstore chains (3, though they all also sell paper wares, pencils etc.), and you need a permit to be allowed to sell Norwegian books. Now our dear Minister of Culture is working on a law (to replace a cartel-agreement) to ensure the status quo. Oh, and paper books have no v.a.t but ebooks will have 8%!

So what happens? People who read a lot wind up reading English, that's what. Now what d'yall think will happen to the Norwegian language in just a few more generations?

Cultural suicide by greed is always nasty to observe but I'm actually having to live here...
Are you able to access Google Books? I did a search for Snorri Sturluson and got multiple hits. The texts are all scanned PDFs and epubs but no DRM, so should be fine to convert if needed.

I got hits for translations in English, Norwegian, and Icelandic... not sure if there's any Old Norse included with the Norwegian and Icelandic texts.

ETA: I found a non-DRM copy of "The Sagas of Olaf Tryggvason and of Harald The Tyrant" on Amazon... it is in English (sorry), but if you can over look that detail, I would be happy to send you a copy.

Last edited by stickybuns; 02-17-2011 at 03:24 PM.
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Old 02-17-2011, 04:00 PM   #75
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Oslo, Norway
Device: Cybook Gen3 & Opus, Sony PRS-650, Sony PRS-T1
I hope you will be happy with your Kindle :-) I have to admit that I'm at bit surprised that your local Sony Center said it doesn't sell the Sony Readers. Here in the Oslo area the Sony Centers all apparently sell the Readers, but they are all our of stock at the moment...
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