[Athen] More on DRM for Apple iPad ebooks
ShelleyHaven at techpotential.net
Tue Feb 16 23:06:07 PST 2010
> Someone will find (probably already has found) a way to crack the
> FairPlay DRM Apple uses in iTunes...
Yes, in fact it was done a few years ago by "DVD Jon" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jon_Lech_Johansen
) who is world famous for reverse engineering just about every DRM out
there, from DVDs to iTunes. He and others have even created a company
around the anti-DRM philosophy, doubleTwist:
> --and if I were interested in pirating books, the insult and
> infantilization would provide strong motivation.
As a good friend once told me, "Locks are to keep honest people
honest". If a person is intent on pirating music, software, or books,
they're probably going to find a way around any restriction regardless
of the DRM used. The main purpose of a DRM "lock", in my opinion, is
just to thwart any fleeting temptation by the other 99+ percent of
Shelley Haven ATP, RET
Assistive Technology Consultant
Shelley at TechPotential.net
On Feb 16, 2010, at 9:22 PM, Ken Petri wrote:
> The DRM that Adobe uses to encrypt ePub books served through their
> Adobe Digital Editions (via Content Server) can be cracked using a
> couple of easy to find Python scripts. Someone will find (probably
> already has found) a way to crack the FairPlay DRM Apple uses in
> iTunes (though it does sound more complex than Content Server).
> Then, with a little bit of effort, any motivated person will be able
> to permanently "open" a DRM'ed ePub book. Once he has the opened
> ePub he can use it on any platform/device he chooses, and it is up
> to him to decide if he wants to break the law and give it or sell it
> to someone else.
> I appreciate O'Reilly's stance. They know that the more restrictive
> you make the DRM on a book you sell, the more roadblocks to usage
> the rightful owner will encounter in using the book--limits on how
> many personal copies he can make of something he legally purchased,
> limits on which of his own devices he can use to read/listen to them.
> O'Reilly seem to implicitly trust that people will tend to do the
> ethical thing and buy a book, rather than steal it. And they seem to
> believe that the tendency once you buy something is not to give it
> away for free.
> Apple (and most major book publishers), on the other hand, want to
> keep the user using iTunes for everything, and seem not to trust
> that someone who pays for a book will respect copyright. I find that
> attitude insulting and infantilizing--and if I were interested in
> pirating books, the insult and infantilization would provide strong
> On Tue, Feb 16, 2010 at 12:28 PM, Shelley Haven <ShelleyHaven at techpotential.net
> > wrote:
> The LA Times reports that Apple is offering their DRM
> "FairPlay" (currently used on iTunes) to publishers for their ePub-
> formatted ebooks on the upcoming iPad. It limits how many times
> digital songs can be copied to other devices; presumably it would
> work the same, limiting how many instances of a downloaded ebook
> could co-exist on a user's devices. (Link below article.)
> Apple to wrap digital books in FairPlay copy protection [Clarified]
> February 15, 2010
> When Apple launches its iBook store to sell titles for its new iPad
> device in March, many of its titles are expected to come with a set
> of handsome digital locks designed to deter piracy.
> Veteran iTunes customers will recognize the locks as FairPlay, a
> digital rights management software that once limited how many times
> digital songs can be copied onto different computers. (Apple phased
> out FairPlay for music a year ago, and now sells unfettered tunes.)
> Next month, Apple will be dusting off those digital cuffs for books,
> according to sources in the publishing industry.
> No doubt some publishers, including O'Reilly Media -- which has
> vociferously argued that digital locks are harmful to sales -- will
> opt not to deploy FairPlay. (O'Reilly, which puts out technical
> books, was not on the list of five publishers during Apple's
> announcement of the iPad, but is discussing a deal with Apple.)
> But the majority of publishers are expected to embrace FairPlay,
> along with other copy protection software such as Adobe's Content
> Server 4, as a means to squelch incipient book piracy as the e-book
> market begins to take off.
> -- Alex Pham
> Clarified 1:50 pm: An earlier version of this post said Apple phased
> out FairPlay a year ago and now sells songs without DRM. Apple
> continues to use FairPlay to protect other iTunes content. Thanks to
> our readers for noticing this omission!
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