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Old 12-03-2021, 06:43 PM   #1
Drou
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Can you de-DRM Kindle Unlimited books to read on a Kobo?

Hello, not sure if this is the right section to post in or if I should ask in Kindle - please let me know if I should move this thread!

I don't pay for Kindle Unlimited but whenever I'm offered a free trial I do like to take up the offer as there are a few authors I read who are only available on Amazon (not enough to make it worth my while to buy a cheap Kindle or subscribe to Kindle Unlimited full time but enough to keep me busy for a month or so once a year/18 months). Since Kindle books you own can be de-DRMed, someone asked me why not do the same to with Kindle Unlimited books so they don't have to be read on my phone. I honestly don't know if this is possible (I haven't even tried to de-DRM any books I actually own yet, it all seems a tad complicated!) but does anyone know if this can be done? In the past, any books I borrowed with KU would show as expired and not open after the trial expired but I don't know if there is some sort of extra built in DRM with KU books or if it just goes by the date and until that date is reached KU books are, to all intents and purposes, the same as any other kindle book in my library.

I'd also like to just clarify that I don't mind deleting KU books after my trial is over, I'm just looking for a more comfortable way to read them while I am allowed to. Thanks!
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Old 12-03-2021, 06:46 PM   #2
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Bear in mind that the author gets no money when you read your de-DRMed copy of a KU book on your Kobo.
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Old 12-03-2021, 06:52 PM   #3
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I'm happy to physically download KU books on my Kindle app if that will give the author royalties, I'm happy to return and delete books within any legitimate trial window from any and all devices, I don't want to cheat the system, I just really want a more comfortable way of reading other than on my phone.
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Old 12-03-2021, 07:09 PM   #4
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I'm happy to physically download KU books on my Kindle app if that will give the author royalties, I'm happy to return and delete books within any legitimate trial window from any and all devices, I don't want to cheat the system, I just really want a more comfortable way of reading other than on my phone.
Just downloading won't give the author anything. KU authors get paid by pages read. And hopping to the end doesn't count either. You have to go through a KU book page by page.
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Old 12-03-2021, 07:12 PM   #5
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I'm going to have to agree with @Sirtel. You must read a KU book as downloaded from Amazon on an Amazon device or app or the author doesn't get paid. One example is that if you page through the book too fast, Amazon's algorithms do not consider the book as read. One of the few reasons I own a Kindle device.
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Old 12-03-2021, 07:20 PM   #6
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Just downloading won't give the author anything. KU authors get paid by pages read. And hopping to the end doesn't count either. You have to go through a KU book page by page.
Does it matter how fast I go through the book page by page? The books I read on KU are fairly short (a couple of hundred pages maybe), I would gladly spend a few minutes using the desktop app just clicking page turn with my mouse. (In fact now I know this is how KU authors make money I may just download some already read books next time I do a free trial and do this anyway to make the author some extra money!).
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Old 12-03-2021, 07:23 PM   #7
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Does it matter how fast I go through the book page by page? The books I read on KU are fairly short (a couple of hundred pages maybe), I would gladly spend a few minutes using the desktop app just clicking page turn with my mouse. (In fact now I know this is how KU authors make money I may just download some already read books next time I do a free trial and do this anyway to make the author some extra money!).
I think the speed counts as well. I.e. just clicking through doesn't count. But I'm not sure.
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Old 12-03-2021, 07:35 PM   #8
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I think the speed counts as well. I.e. just clicking through doesn't count. But I'm not sure.
I see. I don't want to deprive any authors of royalties so I may just to have to pass on the next free trial in that case, I really can't go back to back to reading whole books on backlit devices.
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Old 12-04-2021, 03:36 PM   #9
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Just downloading won't give the author anything. KU authors get paid by pages read. And hopping to the end doesn't count either. You have to go through a KU book page by page.
I didn’t know about that.

If all writers were paid by the number of pages read… I think this is horrifying.

You buy a cake, throw away half of it, and only pay for the half you have eaten?

Last edited by Claude_C; 12-04-2021 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 12-04-2021, 03:55 PM   #10
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I didn’t know about that.

If all writers were paid by the number of pages read… I think this is horrifying.

You buy a cake, throw away half of it, and only pay for the half you have eaten?
Well, if you buy a KU book, then the author will get the full royalties and it doesn't matter if you read the book or not. But if you borrow a KU book, then the author will get their money only by pages read.

That was done because there were numerous frauds. People put a 5-pages-book in KU and got the same amount as the author of a 1000-pages-book. Some put up a book filled with thousands of pages of nonsense text. And so on.

Last edited by Sirtel; 12-04-2021 at 04:02 PM.
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Old 12-04-2021, 04:06 PM   #11
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Well, if you buy a KU book, then the author will get the full royalties and it doesn't matter if you read the book or not. But if you borrow a KU book, then the author will get their money only by pages read.

That was done because there were numerous frauds. People put a 5-pages-book in KU and got the same amount as the author of a 1000-pages-book. Some put up a book filled with thousands of pages of nonsense text. And so on.
Suddenly explains so much
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Old 12-04-2021, 04:49 PM   #12
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Just downloading won't give the author anything. KU authors get paid by pages read. And hopping to the end doesn't count either. You have to go through a KU book page by page.
AND Connect WiFi or Mobile. Side loading an reading the entire book if you never turn on WiFi, means the author/publisher isn't paid.

So if you care about books, do not ever use Kindle Unlimited. It's an invasion of privacy, cheats authors/publishers and locks consumers to the Amazon store.

We, and our friends, do not use KDP Select. KDP Select forbids any other retailer selling it and makes books available via KU etc. We use ordinary KDP. Amazon wants to be the sole publiser and retailer.
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Old 12-04-2021, 05:48 PM   #13
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I occasionally do a KU trial period but I always read my books on my kindle so the author gets paid. I wouldn’t be in KU permanently.
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Old 12-04-2021, 06:11 PM   #14
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AND Connect WiFi or Mobile. Side loading an reading the entire book if you never turn on WiFi, means the author/publisher isn't paid.

So if you care about books, do not ever use Kindle Unlimited. It's an invasion of privacy, cheats authors/publishers and locks consumers to the Amazon store.

We, and our friends, do not use KDP Select. KDP Select forbids any other retailer selling it and makes books available via KU etc. We use ordinary KDP. Amazon wants to be the sole publiser and retailer.
After I read a KU eBook, for the author to get paid is just turning on WiFi enough or would I have to sync?
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Old 12-04-2021, 06:18 PM   #15
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So if you care about books, do not ever use Kindle Unlimited. It's an invasion of privacy, cheats authors/publishers and locks consumers to the Amazon store.
  • Invasion of privacy: Amazon et al. have so much data on me anyway, I can’t get fussed about its knowing how many pages of a KU book I’ve read
  • Cheats authors/publishers: Who agree to the terms; some make money, some get exposure. If they weren’t satisfied, they wouldn’t sign on.
  • Locks consumers to Amazon store: Only for KU. Who doesn’t have a way to access the Kindle store and whatever other purveyor they like? Using KU doesn’t keep you from other sellers. Where’s the lock?
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