Updated 21 May, 2013, 8:08 pm IST
Harry Potter eBooks release sans encryption
| by Anuradha Shetty |
Quite in line with one of our previous reports, Harry Potter eBooks have launched finally. If you head over to the Pottermore Shop now, to get yourself Harry Potter eBooks that are now available on the shop, post a Tuesday release, then you will be in for a pleasant surprise. According to reports, the newly released Harry Potter eBooks come without any encryption. Simply put, once purchased, users will be able to read these eBooks using practically any eBook reader, on any device and even move them to different devices, as and when they wish.
This is clearly an industry-first, since all eBooks from major publishers come with set encryptions, setting limits very clearly - for instance, if you buy an eBook off Amazon, you will be able to read it only on Kindle e-readers and on its Kindle applications for smartphones, tablets and PCs. The same also applies to books by Barnes & Noble's Nook e-readers. In most cases, according to reports, text of the eBooks are scrambled, allowing it to be accessed only by the company's device and software. Quoting the CEO of an independent British-based online bookstore, aNobii, Matteo Berlucchi, the report states, "I think it's a very large crack in a dam that's going to collapse in the next nine to twelve months."
Putting encryptions on eBooks are a way of protecting these creative, intellectual pieces from piracy. Reportedly, most publishers go in for Digital Rights Management, or DRM, which quite true to its name ensures that creative content is not misused. In addition to that, a system, like DRM allows companies like Amazon who have a firmer hold over the eBook business keep their business model guarded. In an environment like this, letting go of the DRM is surely a bold move by J.K Rowling. The report cites that
Rowling had a reason for going DRM-free and a very good one at that. Reportedly, the makers of the series want to “own” their relationship with the Potter fans, keeping their interest peaked at all times. The report states, “It wants to "own" the relationship with the customers - the Potter fans - rather than have them go to other retailers. And the only way to get onto all reading devices without dealing with the other retailers is to sell books without DRM." Quoting Charles Redmayne, CEO of Pottermore, the report states, "We believe that people should have the right, once they've bought the book, to read it on any device that they chose to.It's a very valuable thing to us to own that customer relationship. It gives us a tremendous opportunity to create new products that we can sell to those consumers around the Harry Potter brand."
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