Ebooks to disappear from Microsoft user devices; should we blame DRM?
Digital Rights Management (DRM), also called technological protection measures, is the means by which companies can protect the intellectual propriety rights of their products.
If you are a bibliophile, you probably don't scribble notes or underline text in your beloved books. But in an ebook making notes, highlighting and underlining key points while reading, came without any gnawing aches. And then if you “lose” one of these books you have read, marked and highlighted, that’s a disaster, right?
What if it is “taken away” from you. This is exactly what’s happening with owners of Microsoft e-books. The company has decided to close the e-book section and the books ordered from the store will disappear from your device in the first week of July.
The books that have been purchased, rented or received free from the Microsoft store will all disappear. Microsoft will refund the money for the books that customers have purchased. In an FAQ on its website, the company mentions that it will give a one-time $25 credit to those who have made electronic notes, mark-ups or annotations. But, does it matter!
Digital Rights Management (DRM), also reffered to a technological protection measures, is the means by which companies can protect the intellectual propriety rights of their products. As the name suggest these are a set of access control technologies that are made to reserve the intellectual property rights. But, now we are able to see the downside of it.
Check any app in your phone be it Spotify, Netflix, Amazon, Kindle or any Apple app that provides you any content. All the content that you can download like music, movies, books or any other in-app purchase comes with DRM. This acts like a locker for the users, where they can keep their content safe. It is also meant to reduce piracy, but what if one day the company decides to take down any of the content you have bought. Poof! It’ll be gone in minutes.
Now, go and look at the old bookcase that is standing in your room. The books, CDs and cassettes kept there are all yours. You bought it and no one can take it from you.
Many experts argue about this negative side of DRM as 'You don’t own anything in this internet era'. Think about all the purchases that you have made online and check whether it comes under DRM or not. Do you think what you have with you will stay forever? You can’t make a collection of movies on Netflix nor a playlist of songs that will remain with you all of your life.
Why and how? Microsoft is a pointer to why and how this happens.