Now That Amazon Is Offering Auto-Rip Of CDs You Bought, Will It Do The Same For Books?
from the why-not? dept
Times change. Amazon is making some news by launching an auto-rip service that puts MP3 copies of songs into your Amazon cloud storage when you buy CDs. Some have been comparing this to the old MP3.com “Beam It!” service that got MP3.com sued out of existence a while back, but this is quite different on one key dimension: Amazon has licensing deals with the major labels which specifically allow this (which also means it doesn’t work on all CDs).
Still, this move does raise some interesting question. For example: why not do this for books too? Why not have it so that when you buy a physical book, a digital copy automatically shows up on your Kindle? Of course, the real answer isn’t difficult to glean: because the publishers have no interest at all in doing this (yet). I expect they’ll do it eventually, but the publishers are still going through the same denial phase that many in the recording business went through earlier, and so it’s probably still going to be at least a year before some publisher comes around to such a deal (and then it will be announced as “big news” when it happens).
Another interesting question is whether or not the “AutoRip” service leads to more resells of CDs soon after people buy them. As Sherwin Siy notes, it may not actually be different than buying a CD and ripping it yourself, but the automated nature of it may make it easier to simply pass on the CD. Of course, does that mean you’re legally supposed to delete the MP3s too? I’m sure the industry would argue that’s the case, but it might not be that clear cut.
In the end, this really is the kind of thing that the recording industry should have embraced a decade ago, so welcome to the party (a bit late).