What is DRM?

Posted on August 8, 2011

DRM is short for Digital Rights Management.

The general use of the term is for software and schemes which restrict the way in which you can use digital media. In the context of this FAQ, that means books.

DRM decides where you can read the book (which devices), how long you can use it for, whether you can lend it to someone else, sell it, etc. DRM is much maligned and many people (including myself) openly advocate against it. In the music world there were many DRM disasters with companies selling music, later closing down the shop and people finding themselves unable to listen to their music.

If you buy DRM content, you effectively are “renting” rather than buying use of the book as you are not in control of how you can use it, you may find yourself unable to use it at some point. If you are happy to buy the book, read it, and consider it disposed then all is fine and well. Given the choice of buying a DRM copy vs a non-DRM version, go without DRM always.

Read more on DRM at Wikipedia here.

Posted in: Buying and using eBooks

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