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James D. Macdonald
08-15-2012, 09:51 AM
Doubling Down on DRM (http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/columns-and-blogs/cory-doctorow/article/53544-doubling-down-on-drm.html)

I've been published by Tor, and I've been published by Hachette.

So far I haven't gotten one of these letters, but, if I do, my instant response (via my agent) to "We look forward to hearing what action you propose taking," will be, "The action I propose is to leave Hachette as soon as the title reverts."

Torgo
08-15-2012, 02:10 PM
Doubling Down on DRM (http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/columns-and-blogs/cory-doctorow/article/53544-doubling-down-on-drm.html)

I've been published by Tor, and I've been published by Hachette.

So far I haven't gotten one of these letters, but, if I do, my instant response (via my agent) to "We look forward to hearing what action you propose taking," will be, "The action I propose is to leave Hachette as soon as the title reverts."

Ah, was just coming in to post about this.

Here's some nonsense: "We are fully aware that DRM does not inhibit determined pirates or even those who are sufficiently sophisticated to download DRM removal software. The central point is that we are in favour of DRM because it inhibits file-sharing between the mainstream readers who are so valuable to us and our authors," say Hachette.

DRM doesn't inhibit 'determined pirates', no. As to the people who are cracking the DRM off files themselves - well, I'm assuming you already sold a copy to them, or why is the DRM even present? The fact is, your 'mainstream readers' are only a Google search away from finding a copy of the book with the DRM already cracked. You don't need to be sophisticated to use Google.

You need more sophistication to find, copy and share a DRM-free ebook that you bought legitimately for your e-reader. How many 'mainstream' readers know where to look in a Kindle filesystem for ebook files, or in iTunes?

And also: Hachette know DRM does nothing to inhibit determined pirates, so the annoyances are all aimed squarely at their 'mainstream' paying customers. Bought a book on Kindle? Sorry, you can't read that in your favourite non-Amazon ereader. It's the unskippable DVD ad syndrome, the dire warning the pirate never sees but the paying customer rolls her eyes at.

I can't even lend my mum or my best friends an ebook I enjoyed, the way we've been lending print copies back and forth for years. That's the kind of behaviour that DRM inhibits, not piracy. It's ridiculous.

I look forward to Tor reporting on their DRM-free ebook sales and wiping Hachette's eye with them. We could do with some kind of empirical evidence for what removing the infection does to the bottom line.

It occurs to me though that maybe what Hachette is really concerned about is not piracy - that's a pretext, as ever. It's about territoriality. I for one also look forward to being able to buy Tor ebooks direct from them and read them in the UK, as soon as possible.

girlyswot
08-15-2012, 02:10 PM
Good call.

This is so outrageous it is making my head hurt just to think about it.

Stacia Kane
08-15-2012, 04:41 PM
In other words, "We know this has no effect on thieves, but we feel the need to make sure honest readers don't get to use their books honestly."

Sheesh.

jjdebenedictis
08-15-2012, 06:55 PM
I predict Hachette is going to be hammered by the backlash from this and will cave in and back down from this policy within three months.

Filigree
08-15-2012, 07:37 PM
And so Hachette drops way down my list. What a stupid policy - reminds me of the RIAA.

MoLoLu
08-16-2012, 12:30 AM
This nonsense again? How anyone comes up with these policies I'll never understand.

thothguard51
08-16-2012, 12:51 AM
Will Hachet pick up the contracts of those authors who try to tell other Publishers they have contracts with to use only DRM?

I doubt it...

LindaJeanne
08-16-2012, 03:16 AM
A publisher trying to bully its authors into bullying their other publishers to switch from a policy of enlightened self interest to one that's harmfully reactionary.

That's going to work about as well as... what's a good simile?

Rhoda Nightingale
08-16-2012, 04:36 AM
^About as well as introducing the DRMs in the first place?

Al Stevens
08-16-2012, 04:43 AM
That's going to work about as well as... what's a good simile?Putting Charlie Sheen on a Wheaties box.

thothguard51
08-16-2012, 04:55 AM
Oh come on now, I like Wheaties...

fivetoesten
08-17-2012, 05:16 PM
Here's (http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20120814/06084420017/hachette-tells-authors-tor-to-use-drm-because-it-is-awesome-something.shtml) another article revealing Hachette's genius.

Stlight
08-29-2012, 03:31 AM
I was reading reviews on Amazon and ran across this in one of them:


"I received a very disappointing response from Hachette Book Group...basically they said that they were not going to offer text-to-speech on any of their books which had a downloadable audiobook available & that they plan to disable text-to-speech on the first 3 books in the series as well. Now, the kindle format of each of Carriger's books in this series cost $7.99...while the audiobooks range from $21.99 to 23.99." A. Hiebert Amazon review - http://www.amazon.com/Heartless-Parasol-Protectorate-Gail-Carriger


If this is true, what is Hachette trying to do? Didn't Hachette publish Twilight? Has that money gone to their collective heads? Can Hachette force Amazon to do this? (I'd find that surprising in itself.) The text to speech was the best thing about Kindle.

LindaJeanne
08-29-2012, 04:54 AM
I was reading reviews on Amazon and ran across this in one of them:



"I received a very disappointing response from Hachette Book Group...basically they said that they were not going to offer text-to-speech on any of their books which had a downloadable audiobook available & that they plan to disable text-to-speech on the first 3 books in the series as well. Now, the kindle format of each of Carriger's books in this series cost $7.99...while the audiobooks range from $21.99 to 23.99." A. Hiebert Amazon review -http://www.amazon.com/Heartless-Parasol-Protectorate-Gail-Carriger
If this is true, what is Hachette trying to do? Didn't Hachette publish Twilight? Has that money gone to their collective heads? Can Hachette force Amazon to do this? (I'd find that surprising in itself.) The text to speech was the best thing about Kindle.

Does the ADA cover text-to-speech functionality?

If it doesn't, might someone make an argument that it should be updated to do so?

Edited to add: I know the publisher is European (don't know if there is an equivalent EU law), but Amazon is US-based.

Max Vaehling
08-29-2012, 02:47 PM
So, basically, they know DRM doesn't work, so they have to force it upon everybody? 'Cause otherwise nobody would think of picking it up?

Or maybe they've noticed that just about any other company (particularly Tor) sells more books without DRM than they do with DRM, and they want to level the field, only backwards?

Or maybe they just want to quit publishing altogether but are afraid to do it in a straightforward fashion so they just make sure that nobody wants to sign up with them anymore?

Buffysquirrel
08-29-2012, 04:11 PM
Yet Hachette must know who has the power in the publisher/author relationship, and it usually ain't the author....

Torgo
08-29-2012, 04:52 PM
Yet Hachette must know who has the power in the publisher/author relationship, and it usually ain't the author....

Depends on the author!

Buffysquirrel
08-29-2012, 06:16 PM
Depends on the author!

Lol, very true :D.