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Old 05-15-2009, 01:27 PM   #46
Daithi
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If Amazon believed that the TTS feature did not transform their eBook into an audio book then they still needed to pass the hurdle of their device reading the book not being construed as a "public performance" i.e. something that would be a copyright violation.
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Old 05-15-2009, 01:33 PM   #47
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It's not a public performance when the consumer uses it for personal use. The whole "public performance" argument was a stretch, and more for posturing than anything else. Their real argument is over the distributor contract and wanting the higher royalty rate that classifying it as an "audio book" would get them.
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Old 05-15-2009, 02:07 PM   #48
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I agree that it is a stretch. I think classifing eBooks that can be read by a device as audio books is a strech as well.

My initial post asked "who's right is it?" My overall position was simply that regardless of the merits of copyright law (or contract law as you pointed out) that Amazon is within their right to side with their suppliers and turn off TTS. (Personal attacks aside, I also thought Jon had a good arguement about that giving consumers the right to remove DRM -- realizing that this position hasn't been tested in court yet.)
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Old 05-15-2009, 02:29 PM   #49
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Originally Posted by JSWolf View Post
I would not listen to an audiobook while driving.. it requires too much concentration on the book to drive. Now safe enough. It's like holding a cell phone while driving. I won't do that either. But I will se the speakerphone part of my cell easily.
I've listened to audiobooks while driving for many years. I first started listening to cassettes, graduated to cd's and now use my iPod--plugged in to the auxilary jack on my radio. To me it's not like holding a cell phone at all-more like listening to a ball game or the news on the radio. I don't have to interact with the audio book, and I'm always able to ignore my audio book and pay attention to what's going on around me if need be. It's a simple thing to rewind a few minutes of my book to get back to where I was.

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Old 05-15-2009, 02:38 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by Daithi View Post
My overall position was simply that regardless of the merits of copyright law (or contract law as you pointed out) that Amazon is within their right to side with their suppliers and turn off TTS.
But that's exactly what's false here: Amazon is NOT above the law, namely the (otherwise also largely illegal/anti-constitutional) DMCA which specifically dressed this issue by creating exemptions.

In other words in best case Amazon's/publisher's active prohibition amounts to nothing else but to trying to block the law which is illegal.
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Old 05-15-2009, 02:44 PM   #51
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In other words in best case Amazon's/publisher's active prohibition amounts to nothing else but to trying to block the law which is illegal.
Actually, no; the exemptions do not make it illegal for producers to create those barriers; it just makes it legal for consumers to circumvent those barriers in certain circumstances.
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Old 05-15-2009, 03:26 PM   #52
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Originally Posted by sirbruce View Post
Actually, no; the exemptions do not make it illegal for producers to create those barriers; it just makes it legal for consumers to circumvent those barriers in certain circumstances.
I agree. Consumers have the legal right to enable TTS, publishers feel they must disable TTS (based on contracts with authors written years ago), Amazon did not have to enable TTS but once they did they almost have to allow publishers to disable in on a per book basis (not because of copyright but because of their contracts with publishers).

The bad part is that MobileRead has to avoid explicit instructions about how to circumvent TTS disabling, because Amazon or the publishers might sue. It does not matter that consumers would probably win a case if they were ever sued for circumvention. It might in any case still be illegal to aid someone in circumventing the TTS flag.
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Old 05-15-2009, 04:22 PM   #53
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Originally Posted by wallcraft View Post
The easiest way to implement a "remote kill" is for Amazon to redownload the ebook with the TTS flag record included in the metadata. I have never heard of Amazon doing this, and I have heard of cases where an author updated an ebook and Amazon told them they could not push the corrected ebook to existing owners.
Based on personal testing, I've found that all previously purchased content remains TTS-enabled, even when re-downloaded. TTS-blocking appears to only affect purchases beginning this week and also includes samples.

The notion of a remote "kill switch" is the kind of fear-mongering you would expect from the likes of Faux News. There is absolutely no evidence supporting such a claim. I would look at all future posts from the source of this bogus rumor with a very wary eye.

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Old 05-15-2009, 04:35 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by Shaggy View Post
It's not a question of copyright. The Authors/Publishers and Amazon are arguing over the licensing rights to sell the book. Distributors (Amazon, etc) negotiate licenses to sell printed books and audio books separately. This is a contract dispute between the Authors/Publishers and Distributors over whether TTS counts as a sale of a printed book or as a sale of an audio book (which typically has higher licensing costs). It has nothing to do with copyrights or the consumer.
And one must note, that the authors have been so fundamentally dishonest in stating their case in the public square...that they look very much like the RIAA in the Diamond Rio suit.

Sometimes in a moment of greed and fear people and groups can damage their reputations beyond repair-

The author's guild is hell bent on doing this now.
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Old 05-15-2009, 04:52 PM   #55
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Jon believes the exemption intended for blind automatically extends to everyone in the USA. I doubt his opinion would stand up in court but he expresses it often enough to make it seem true. I am sure I have read it at least 100 times now.
The only way Jon's opinion would stand up in court in this matter is if the only judge listening to him was Clarence Thomas -- and then only until Clarence wrote his opinion telling Jon that exemption does not extend to everyone in the USA.
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Old 05-15-2009, 05:00 PM   #56
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The bad part is that MobileRead has to avoid explicit instructions about how to circumvent TTS disabling, because Amazon or the publishers might sue. It does not matter that consumers would probably win a case if they were ever sued for circumvention. It might in any case still be illegal to aid someone in circumventing the TTS flag.
Why? Has the safe harbor rule disappeared suddenly?
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Old 05-15-2009, 05:05 PM   #57
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Originally Posted by DaleDe View Post
Jon believes the exemption intended for blind automatically extends to everyone in the USA.
On the whole, the discussion in Disabling text-to-speech (TTS) triggers DMCA exemption: YOU ARE ALLOWED TO REMOVE DRM supports Jon on the "everyone" issue. It is less supportive on when the exception applies. However, most likely no one in the discussion is really qualified to say.
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Old 05-15-2009, 05:29 PM   #58
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On the whole, the discussion in Disabling text-to-speech (TTS) triggers DMCA exemption: YOU ARE ALLOWED TO REMOVE DRM supports Jon on the "everyone" issue. It is less supportive on when the exception applies. However, most likely no one in the discussion is really qualified to say.
I just meant that the correct way is to do as google and oether. Let all information be available since you cannot guess correctly what is not allowed and if you get a DCMA notice you can choose to remove the material.
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Old 05-15-2009, 05:54 PM   #59
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Getting back to the original topic -- I checked The Stand, which is the only title I have that I know for sure is going to be TTS disabled, and it still works. It may not be the best example, since it's not currently available, but the holding page for the Kindle version tells me that "You purchased this item on July 11, 2008" so I'm guessing the ASIN will be the same. I did download a couple samples in the past few days, so I have connected to whispernet recently.

I would be really surprised if Amazon applied this retroactively anyway, and I find this whole Orwellian idea of what Amazon can do to our content sort of overblown and paranoid.

Also, listening to the first page of The Stand in TTS reminds me of why I would never choose to use TTS It's awful, and anyone who thinks it's a valid substitute for a real audiobook needs to have their ears examined pronto.
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Old 05-15-2009, 11:22 PM   #60
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The only way Jon's opinion would stand up in court in this matter is if the only judge listening to him was Clarence Thomas -- and then only until Clarence wrote his opinion telling Jon that exemption does not extend to everyone in the USA.
This is exactly the type of ignorant nonsense MPAA/RIAA/Hollywood/Authors' Guild/Publishers et al love to spread around, only to scare off people.

Don't spread the BS, please.
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