Friday, July 17, 2009

The Kindle Return Policy?

David Pogue's Technology Blog at the New York Times reports how Amazon takes a book back. And they may not tell you before they do it. I'm talking about eBooks, obviously. I've read the DRM statements for the Kindle and this doesn't actually surprise me. This is allowed for in the Kindle Terms of Service. This is basicallt part of what I'm talking about when I say that the eBook paradigm is shaping up to become a "limited lease" agreement. In lieu of ownership (in the classic sense) of the electronic book you are agreeing to specific conditions under which you may keep it and under which the purveyor may take it back. Not only can they tell you if, when or how many times you can loan your copy to someone, they can remove it from your electronic library with or without your permission. They may have had good reasoning, that's not the point. It's about who owns your books.

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Pages to Type is a blog about books, writing and literary culture (with the occasional digression into coffee and the care and feeding of giant robots).