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Event on Saturday to get DRM out of the Boston Public Library [Feb. 7th, 2008|11:04 am]
The Boston Community



DefectiveByDesign.org has announced an action against libraries that support DRM on their collections. Boston locals can join them this Saturday from 1pm to 3pm at the Boston Public Library's main branch, and non-locals are encouraged to stage an action against their own library if it's using DRM.

Read story at Digg

(I'll be there.)


[User Picture]From: perspicuity
2008-02-07 05:59 pm (UTC)
in this case 'public domain works'... those would be works either placed in the public domain, or with expired rights protections, yes? copy all you like.

if you check an actual cd out of the library, they want it back, yes? probably in say, 14 days... that's an expiration period of sorts. you give it back, you can't listen anymore. want to listen more? check it out again.

as well, in theory, since you checked it out, you shouldn't share it. it might get damaged/lost, and you'd be liable for the return.

quoting the DRM terms from that link you posted:
'''This title can be played during the lending period
Collaborative play of this title is not allowed
This title can be burned to CD during the lending period (for personal use only; no other duplication/distribution of material is permitted under the terms of the license)
This title can be transferred to a portable device during the lending period'''

lending period. same as borrowing. there is an end/return date. check.

you can't share your download; well, you can't in the say that you can't send that file to someone directly. you really can't share books/cds either unless you copy them.

you can transfer the title to cd or a portable device, so you COULD keep it after the lending period were you of a mind to, and easily rip it and share it, but that would be a trifle extra work, and possibly illegal as well (most current works are probably copyrighted and/or not public domain)

when you borrow something from a library, you've effectively entered into a contract with them as i understand it, which makes you responsible for the borrowed materials. they've already limited your rights! always have done so.

generally speaking, you are not supposed to wholesale copy books, or cds, or movies you borrow from libraries. literary excerpts have been allowed, to a limit, and some people make so called fair use of such things.

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[User Picture]From: johnsu01
2008-02-07 06:10 pm (UTC)
The warrant for restrictions on lending periods from libraries is scarcity. If you have it, someone else can't have it. That's not true for digital materials so we don't need the same restrictions. Libraries that don't have a problem with scarcity often have infinite lending periods already. Additionally, the software for enforcing the lending period digitally is spyware and sits between you and your computer -- that in itself is a precedent to resist.

Note that the restriction list for Alice and Wonderland says No Collaborative Playing. But this is a work that's *already* in the public domain. DRM systems mean the end of the public domain, because every work will be wrapped in digital restrictions that are independently enforced from copyright law. That's not just the same old same old, that's something new.

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[User Picture]From: perspicuity
2008-02-07 06:28 pm (UTC)
scarcity. the library listing for that item is 1. it's on reserve. so you have to wait. they have scarcity. why? because they bought a single copy of it. same for any media. being digital doesn't change licensing on copyrighted materials generally speaking.

yes, it's copyrighted. the STORY is public domain now. you can download a nice copy from gutenberg or mobipocket for free! you don't even have to pay them for storing it for you.

however, that narrated version? it's much like playing a song. it's a performance, recorded, and copyrighted as anything. it's not free either. sells for $15 iirc. the library had to buy a copy. they are not going to buy one and distribute 999 copies for free... not going to happen DRM or no.

it's perfectly fair and legal currently to take a public domain non copyrighted work and wrap it up and sell it. book publishers do it all the time. in this case, it's been done via audio narration, and they've put some restrictions on it - none apparently so good that you can't copy it.

i will agree with you that requiring software to be installed to use it may stink, and that the software MAY even be malicious later, but i can't speak to that. if all the software is doing is restricting the N day policy, and otherwise allowing you to play it, it's not much different than any other music playing software (which may contain malicious code).

thetathx1138's comment below addresses something similar.


Edited at 2008-02-07 06:30 pm (UTC)
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