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Old 06-18-2013, 12:05 PM   #46
HarryT
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Originally Posted by Rbneader View Post
I keep expecting this to be a joke, but it looks like it's actually serious. Has no one ever explained to this people that word choice is actually a large part of what authors do?
Do it by inserting non-printable characters and you could "tag" each copy of the book in a non-invasive way. All popular book formats are based on HTML, and HTML ignores surplus carriage returns between paragraphs, to give a simple example.
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Old 06-18-2013, 05:49 PM   #47
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Do it by inserting non-printable characters and you could "tag" each copy of the book in a non-invasive way. All popular book formats are based on HTML, and HTML ignores surplus carriage returns between paragraphs, to give a simple example.
Sure but as pointed out already, publishers struggle to put out editions with not errors for the know text. How are they ever going to win in court if the accused points to that fact to suggest if they can't keep errors out of the the original text how can they claim their "special" hidden content is error free? They likely cannot, at least not without revealing the who algorithm for embedding and decoding these character strings.

It also seems no different from when one of the ebook publishers used to link the licensing code to the CC used to buy the book online. Was that Fictionwise or ?????

I actually do not see this as any different than watermarking. If the extra characters are there, even if encrypted, they can be extracted and altered or replaced with some other set that doesn't trip the alarm.

To me it all goes back to the premise locking your front door does not stop anyone who wants to steal your goodies. All it does is piss off the amateurs who then make a bigger mess of things. Better to just get a moat and a few dozen hungry bandersnatch to guard the place.
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Old 06-18-2013, 06:37 PM   #48
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IIRC, Barnes and Nobel still does link your credit card with the DRM.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:14 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by rkw View Post
They likely cannot, at least not without revealing the who algorithm for embedding and decoding these character strings.
It's not like they can keep those algorithms secret anyway.

With any kind of security you have to assume that your opponents know your algorithms. Anything else is security through obscurity which doesn't work.
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Old 06-18-2013, 08:32 PM   #50
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Wondering if many ebook typos and formatting errors aren't actually accidental.
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Old 06-19-2013, 02:02 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by zigzagz View Post
Wondering if many ebook typos and formatting errors aren't actually accidental.
Hmmm... interesting point
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:09 AM   #52
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Wondering if many ebook typos and formatting errors aren't actually accidental.
Yup...for hidden codes some forms of fractal type noise generation algorithm could conceivably be used but dang we are just talking about ebooks fer goodness sakes. Still watching this modern day keystone jobs that are publishers push to fear based reaction by the DRM providers would think it was War & Peace all over again...now think about adding MORE noise to War & Peace and it's enough to make on WANT to read Dan Brown. O:-)
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Old 06-19-2013, 12:28 PM   #53
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This recalls another "DRM" scheme I've encountered, which is similar in spirit to this idea.

I enjoy listening to streamed interned radio when working at the computer. Most internet radio streams contain "metadata" about the track playing - song title and artist. So winamp, or whatever app you're running, will display the current song playing.

A few years ago, I listened to a station that would, every 30 seconds or so, randomly change a single character in this track metadata. I think this was to thwart anyone trying to "pirate" the music by recording their stream and creating MP3s based on the track metadata. Such a pirate would just end up with a bunch of 30 second MP3s with slightly incorrect track data.
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:09 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by Ralph Sir Edward View Post
I don't know, it might improve some of the poetry collection I have read...

LOL..you folks crack me up!
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:11 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by elcreative View Post
Funnily enough, this method was used in one of the early "Jack Ryan" novels of Tom Clancy... but only aimed at a small number of copies being circulated in government circles and also extended slightly to have the differing area written in such a fashion as to be almost guaranteed to be used in a quote - used to catch a leaker...

Tell more, that is a fascinating...
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:13 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Graham View Post
From a bomb-defusing manual with the proposed DRM:

"The wires are red, green and blue. It's vital that you cut the latter wire first."

Graham

LOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLLLL
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:35 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by rkw View Post
How are they ever going to win in court if the accused points to that fact to suggest if they can't keep errors out of the the original text how can they claim their "special" hidden content is error free?
If the algorithm is sufficiently robust and well-explained, jurors may correctly understand that eBook quality is a separate issue.

Also, prosecutors frequently win weak cases.

Also, the standard of proof is not beyond a shadow of a doubt. If eBook piracy was pursued as a civil matter, the standard of proof would merely be the proponderance of the evidence.

Lastly, I'd hope the emphasis was on deterence rather than punishment.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:24 PM   #58
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Tell more, that is a fascinating...
The idea involved making certain summary paragraphs (in an intel report) rather more lurid than usual so as to be almost irresistible to a newspaper getting a leaked documents. It was used for limited circulation documents (around 5-10 people) and the specific paragraphs were different in every copy of the document so if quoted it would pinpoint the person leaking the documents - neat idea which, of course, worked in the book. Think it was "Patriot Games" but not sure as it's years since I read it...
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Old 06-21-2013, 03:13 PM   #59
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The thought of publishers messing with the author's work is unacceptable.
But if such system were implemented, it would be interesting to see which authors would agree to it and which would not.
It would probably be a good indication of which authors are in for the money only and which care for the art itself.
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Old 06-22-2013, 03:14 AM   #60
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This would work if the different alternatives were provided by the authors themselves. Provide alternative text in 30 different locations and you have potentially 1 billion (2^30 ~ 10^9) versions.

The method is, of course, trivial to defeat once you know it (and if you know at least some of the possible changes), so it would catch occasional pirates, but not "professional" ones.
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