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Old 05-01-2013, 11:57 AM   #1
jfm
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Question re clippings limit

For research, I just purchased a book from Amazon that is an updated version of a 70+ year old book with added material, etc. I didn't care so much about all of that, but this is still an important book, and I wanted to do the right thing.

Naturally, I highlighted a bunch of stuff. At no time - not once - did I get a notice on my Kindle w/keyboard that there was a problem. It was only after I had finished the entire book and was reviewing MyClippings.txt that I saw the notices there in place of the highlights. They began about half way trough the book. Now, I am very angry at Amazon to the extent that I will never purchase a book there again, unless it is an absolute last resort, and that will rarely be the case. I intend to tell them that and request a full refund, but that is tomorrow's problem.

Anyway, I have now de-DRMed the book using ApprenticeAlf's plugin for Calibre. I have read all I can find on the subject, and it looks like I am just stuck. However, before I bite the bullet and manually copy the remaining 200 or so highlights, using Kindle for PC, I wanted to ask if my conclusion is correct? Is there any way to get those remaining highlights and notes into my MyClippings file? I hope that I either missed something or misunderstood what I was reading.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 05-01-2013, 01:30 PM   #2
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If you have your annotations backing up to Amazon, your clippings might be viewable here:

https://kindle.amazon.com/your_highlights

I don't use the clippings feature, so I don't have any way to verify this.
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Old 05-01-2013, 02:03 PM   #3
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What is it that you're angry about? It's no secret that there's a limit to the amount of a book that you can copy. Did you buy it to read it, or to copy it?
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Old 05-01-2013, 02:13 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pidgeon92 View Post
If you have your annotations backing up to Amazon, your clippings might be viewable here:

https://kindle.amazon.com/your_highlights

I don't use the clippings feature, so I don't have any way to verify this.
What a brilliant and scholarly suggestion. Must be. I would have thought of it, otherwise, right?

In spite of the completely nonsensical aspect of the notion that the notes wouldn't be in MyClippings.txt but would be available on the web site, they apparently are! At least they are in my case, so you saved my bacon. Thanks!

Amazon's behavior in things like this shows just how dumb really smart people can behave sometimes.

Thanks again. Hope this helps someone else, as well.
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Old 05-01-2013, 02:54 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
It's no secret that there's a limit to the amount of a book that you can copy.
It's not a secret, but it certainly isn't advertised. I can certainly see where people doing research in a book would make extensive highlights and notations. The fact that the amount of clipping that one can do varies from book to book doesn't help matters. And the fact that the Kindle doesn't always tell you when a clipping limit is reached is just silly.
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:40 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
What is it that you're angry about? It's no secret that there's a limit to the amount of a book that you can copy. Did you buy it to read it, or to copy it?
A silly question, IMHO. Since you are a member of this forum, you should know that if one wanted to copy a book, there are far easier ways than to highlight+copy+paste. So, as usual with this kind of thing, the goody-goodies are only hurting those who are trying to do the right thing and not slowing the pirates down at all. I could have had a free, non DRMed version any time I wanted, but you should know that, too.

Not helpful, but thanks for replying, anyway.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:11 PM   #7
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My point was that your anger is perhaps misdirected. It's the publisher who decides what percentage of the book can be copied. If you feel that the limit for this particular book is too low, it's the publisher who's to blame.

The clipping limit is generally set to be at least 10%. One might well question whether copying more than 10% of a book can really be considered "fair use" under copyright law.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:39 PM   #8
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My point was that your anger is perhaps misdirected. It's the publisher who decides what percentage of the book can be copied. If you feel that the limit for this particular book is too low, it's the publisher who's to blame.
A good point, but the only way that I can deal with Amazon's publishers is through Amazon, and I might add here that I think that Amazon is, overall, a great company that usually gives a lot of consideration to customers' concerns.

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The clipping limit is generally set to be at least 10%. One might well question whether copying more than 10% of a book can really be considered "fair use" under copyright law.
A fair question. Maybe expecting to be able to do more with an ebook is unreasonable. Certainly, if one wants to do more than Amazon is permitting, even if innocent of motive, then that requires a modification of behavior, and I do not think that pushing a user to that is beneficial, in the long run, to either Amazon or the publisher. Before this, I have always looked to Amazon first. Now I won't. Before this, I would not have considered de-DRMing a book I buy from Amazon. Now I will. Is that a flaw in my character, in the system, or in both, or does that even matter, since it's not going to affect me much - just a little extra effort - but is going to affect Amazon?
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:44 PM   #9
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Incidentally, the biggest problems are, 1. not making sure that people know this about a book, and 2. not notifying me upon the first incidence of excess of highlights and then every time thereafter. If they had done those two things, then I wouldn't have much to complain about.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:50 PM   #10
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It's simply Digital Restrictions Management at work.
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:15 AM   #11
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@jfm: Usually, each book has a clipping limit of 10%, which is usually sufficient. You can check the clipping limit of your book with Java Mobi Metadata Editor.
Look for EXTH record #401. If its value is significantly less than 10, the publisher might have made a mistake in producing the book.
When you buy your next Kindle book, you could use the Metadata editor to check for the presence of this record and delete it.
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:21 AM   #12
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Quote:
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@jfm: Usually, each book has a clipping limit of 10%, which is usually sufficient. You can check the clipping limit of your book with Java Mobi Metadata Editor.
Look for EXTH record #401. If its value is significantly less than 10, the publisher might have made a mistake in producing the book.
When you buy your next Kindle book, you could use the Metadata editor to check for the presence of this record and delete it.
I beleive that the DeDRM tools set the clipping limit to 100% when they remove DRM, and also enable text-to-speech.
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:22 AM   #13
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2. not notifying me upon the first incidence of excess of highlights and then every time thereafter.
This. Bad design on Amazon's part. It should not silently fail.
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Old 05-02-2013, 10:51 AM   #14
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Bottom line is it is going to make me modify my behavior in a way that I did not want to go and that is not going to be good for Amazon, and I think that is evidence of bad policy. Just my opinion.

Anyone know if other legitimate epub and mobi ebook sellers have the same goof-ball restrictions imposed by publishers? I would assume yes, but then I also assumed that since my clips were not available in MyClippings.txt, they would not be available online, and I was wrong.
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Old 05-02-2013, 11:08 AM   #15
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I entirely agree that failing silently is bad, but I must respectfully disagree that a 10% clipping limit for a copyrighted work is a "goof-ball restriction". It's a pretty generous proportion of a book to be able to copy. My local library, for example, will only allow one to copy a single chapter from a book.

What would you consider to be a reasonable percentage?
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