Paul Aitken demonstrates why DRM is bad

Paul Aitken inadvertantly demonstrates why DRM is bad:

An absolutely extraordinary statement from Paul Aitken, the executive director of the Authors Guild, upon hearing that the new Amazon Kindle has an experimental text-to-speech factor. Rather than think about how this feature might expand readership, he immediately insisted that it’s illegal to use it:

“They don’t have the right to read a book out loud. That’s an audio right, which is derivative under copyright law.” By that reasoning pretty much any use of text-to-speech software is illegal, which would make for a fascinating legal case. And, actually, if you take that reasoning further, any reading outloud from a book that is not yours is also a violation of copyright law, according to Aitken. Read to your kids at night? Watch out for the Authors Guild police banging down your door.

If electronic books all had DRM, then the Aitkens of this world could make a ban on text-to-speech stick. But because many books in electronic form aren’t encumbered with DRM, they are just data that can be processed in arbitrary ways, if I have a speech synthesizer on my computer, I can read out books on it, whether Aitken likes it or not.

For reasons like that, I’ll never buy a DRM-crippled book or any other DRM-crippled data; any such data isn’t worth the space it takes up on my hard disk.

This entry was posted in computers, digital rights, DRM, open source, USA and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Paul Aitken demonstrates why DRM is bad

  1. Steve says:

    Agree with your point totally. This is an all around stupid stance by the Author’s guild have written on my blog about referencing a Guardian blog piece.

    I didn’t consider the DRM tech aspect though

  2. Pingback: Old fart authors scared of Kindles | g2

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