Miscalibrated Internet Receptor Stalks

Cross a border, lose your ebooks

Compliments of Wil Wheaton's tumblr, here's an exceptionally frustrating and boneheaded example of how dumb DRM is. From Boing Boing:

Jim O’Donnell was at a library conference in Singapore when his Ipad’s Google Play app asked him to update it. This was the app through which he had bought 30 to 40 ebooks, and after the app had updated, it started to re-download them. However, Singapore is not one of the countries where the Google Play bookstore is active, so it stopped downloading and told him he was no longer entitled to his books.

It’s an odd confluence of travel, updates, and location-checking, but it points out just how totally, irretrievably broken the idea of DRM and region-controls for ebooks is.


Another stunning example of the rampant stupidity of DRM, especially on books. I can understand being unable to buy the books in Singapore; publishers have confusing ways of providing publishing rights to different countries all containing different rules, but he had bought these books already!

As Wil Wheaton said:

Meanwhile, someone who got those books some other way, perhaps from a certain Bay, for example, would be able to read them anywhere on the planet, as long as that hypothetical person had electricity.

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