Will Publishers Shut Down Libraries Over Copy Protection?

from the unlikely dept

Every few years, we hear stories about book publishers freaking out about libraries again, and how they may hurt the publishing business. Of course, lots of ingrained history usually causes plenty of people to speak up and make it clear to publishers why they’re being pretty moronic in that view. However, with new technologies like copy protection, some libraries are beginning to fear that they won’t be able to lend out books in the future (or to historically archive them). While it may be something of a concern, it’s probably not as big a deal as it’s being made out to be. If enough people complain about libraries in trouble, it’s likely that the publishers will figure out some sort of compromise solution. In fact, we’ve already a few attempts at making it easier to loan out digital books. The archiving issue may, however, be a bigger deal — but is less likely to get much of a public outcry.

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Comments on “Will Publishers Shut Down Libraries Over Copy Protection?”

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Jimmy Bear Pearson (user link) says:

Similar to music?

I think this is an interesting issue. Once books become digitized in a ubiquitous way, book publishers will have an extremely similar issue (so they might perhaps think) to that of digitized music.

Personally, I’ve rarely seen pirated books (books of a reasonably good size, that is – I’ve seen lots of photocopies of articles, excerpts from books, sheet music, etc.).

I think this is an excellent opportunity for the book publishing business to get ahead of the game and learn from the throes through which the music and movie business already going.

Justice Erolin (user link) says:

Re: Similar to music?

The problem with having digitized books is that book-readers tend to like having a physical book in their hands, rather than having to click through a PDF or eBook. The biggest leap I’ve seen is that of text books. Online classes and tech universities (MIT) are using PDF-based text books, which I believe is worth doing.

Wes Baker (user link) says:

Books Aren't Going Out of Style Anytime Soon

People like books because they aren’t computers. I think it is truly that simple. I mean I use my computer everyday and it makes a lot of things easier and faster. Yet, I will continue to buy paper and ink versions of books. I think a big reason for this is reading for extended periods of time on a monitor starts to mess with your eyes..at least it does for me. Plus, knowing that I could ALT-Tab and do something else is distracting.
To address textbooks, PDF textbooks are a horrible idea and here’s why. You buy a textbook for $100 (yeah, prices keep going up because less people are buying them….hmmmm) or an ebook is avaliable for 2/3 the price at around $60-70. I will take the textbook every single time. Wanna know why? Copy protection! You can’t sell that eBook when you are done with it! Textbooks can be put up on eBay or Amazon or even sold to a real-life human being, I swear they exist and want books!

Anonymous Coward says:

No Subject Given

Back in the early 90’s when I needed to research in collage on an local event in a past newspaper article I used to be able to do that at the library via microfilms. A few months ago I decided to look up a past event in the same way at the same library. Turns out they were forced to destroy and remove all such archives from that paper and now you have to go directly to them and pay them a fee to do the same research.

Anonymous of Course says:

Re: No Subject Given

Some local libraries seem to be in competition
with block buster, lending video tapes and dvd’s.
Their books are being culled to make room for
periodicals and paperback romance novels.
Just trying to give the people what they want
I guess. Even so it makes me want to puke.
The federal book repositories remain in good
shape though.

Judah Jacobs says:

Libraries and copy protection

Many libraries in the U.S. lend out music CDs, non-fiction DVDs and other copyrighted material. Anyoone can copy the CDs and the DVDs. Over time these CDs get destroyed as their surfaces get scratched and the music is lost to the general public.
The question is why doesn’t the library preserve all the music on a central server, deal with the holders of the copyright and STREAM the media to anyone with a broadband connection? This would solve the copyright infringment. Is it so difficult to set up a streaming media server under APACHE? I don’t think so.

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