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Ownership for Kindle Books

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Showing 1-25 of 58 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 30, 2011, 2:13:39 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 30, 2011, 2:14:32 PM PDT
Pia says:
I'm thinking about getting a Kindle.
But I don't understand how ownership for a book is handled if it is purchased as a Kindle download.
When I buy a print book, I can resell it as a used book (or not). It is mine to keep forever if it lasts that long, and whatever the publisher or bookseller does or not does has nothing to do anymore with the book I purchased.
Is that the same with the elecronic reader file? Once I'm done reading a book I can go to e-bay and resell the file?
Or what happens if Amazon goes bankrupt (which I hope it won't), are my books still mine and available? How does that work?



In reply to an earlier post on Aug 30, 2011, 2:18:58 PM PDT
Grimlock says:
Try googling if you want a more detailed answer, but you aren't buying the ebook you're buying the right to read the book. You can't resell and some publishers allow you to lend the book once for fourteen days.

Posted on Aug 30, 2011, 2:27:51 PM PDT
A. Sisk says:
If re-selling or giving away your books is a big deal, then an e-reader is likely not for you.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 30, 2011, 2:32:04 PM PDT
Russ says:
Technically with an e-book your only purchasing a license to read the book and not the book itself

Posted on Aug 30, 2011, 2:32:29 PM PDT
Bufo Calvin had a good article on his blog: http://ilmk.wordpress.com/2011/08/29/who-owns-your-kindle-books/.

Posted on Aug 30, 2011, 2:36:20 PM PDT
Carbonbased says:
Ebooks and print books have different utilities. With an ebook, everybody in your household (within reason) can read the book at the same time.

While you can lend/sell/give away a print book until it disintegrates, you really only own a copy, not the book. If you think you own the actual book, try changing the hero's name to yours and reprinting it.

If, in the fullness of time, Amazon quits supporting the files, they have said they would provide a legal way to strip the DRM that prevents kindle books from being read on non-Amazon readers and apps.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 7:53:24 PM PDT
Pia says:
Thank you, that post indeed helps clarifying the concepts.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 7:54:37 PM PDT
Pia says:
But -how to put it- all of this seems to be just subject to the definition of a contract that amazon creates. What if they change it?

Posted on Sep 6, 2011, 7:56:58 PM PDT
Pia says:
I got another question, I saw that my library offers e-books for lown, but the kindle doesn't appear on their list. All of this is so confusing... how about file formats? Are they not standards? Can it be that there are e-books I can read with a kindle but not another device or can read with another device but not a kindle? All this seems so much easier in the case of paper books, I just need to know the language and be able to read and all is fine.
(I hope that link will work)


In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 7:58:25 PM PDT
Bufo Calvin says:
Then that would affect future purchases, Pia, not those for which we have already paid...subject to what the Terms of Conditions say about changes, of course. The publishers are also involved in those contracts...they set some of the limitations on the titles, like simultaneous device licenses and clipping limits.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 8:01:42 PM PDT
Pia says:
I'm just thinking, now when books are out of print, I can go to the library or I can go to a used book store and find it, sometimes across the whole world, but I can get it. But what if amazon and/or other electronic book sellers decide to not publish a book anymore? How get it then? If it's just a license?

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 8:06:54 PM PDT
Bufo Calvin says:
Pia, that's correct...there are e-book formats that you can read on one EBR (E-Book Reader) and not on another. However, you can read Kindle store books on a wide range of devices:

Android devices
iPhones, iPads, iPod touches
Windows 7 phones
and in compatible web browsers with the Cloud Reader (Google Chrome for one right now, more in the coming months)

As to your library lending...Amazon has announced that we will have that for our Kindles by the end of the year, so just hang in there on that.

For more information on the file formats, you may find this thread interesting:


There are some things that are easier with e-books, some that are easier for p-books (paperbooks). For example, it's easier to search an e-book. It's easier for my family to read the same book in two different parts of the country at the same time with e-books. It's easier to replace your e-books after a fire or flood (you just download them again for free). You can increase the size of the text in e-books, and even have them read out loud to you (unless the publisher blocks the access)...the latter two are important for those with print challenges.

I'm an inveterate booklover with something like 10,000 paperbooks in my home, and books that are over 100 years old...and I greatly prefer reading my e-books. :)

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 8:07:34 PM PDT
Naomi Kramer says:
Yes, there are two main formats - EPUB and MOBI. Kindles will read MOBI but not EPUB, most other ebook readers will read EPUB but not MOBI. The Kindle store sells books in MOBI format, protected so that only a Kindle registered to the buyer's account can read them. Other bookstores sell books in EPUB format, protected so that only an ebook reader registered to the correct Adobe Digital Editions account (or in B&N's case, with the correct credit card number) can read them.

Overdrive will, I hear, be stocking Kindle books later in the year.

It is a lot to learn and get the hang of, but I think it's worth it. Congratulations on doing your research FIRST, seriously. So many people do it later and find they haven't bought what they thought they did. *face-palm*

Another thing to check out, which might affect your decision - http://ereaderiq.com/free - listings of books available for free in the Kindle store. Almost every day a few new ones are offered.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 8:09:12 PM PDT
Bufo Calvin says:
Pia, that's another wonderful thing about e-books...they will generally not go out of print! It's so much easier to keep an e-book available than to keep a p-book in print. P-books generally go out of print within a few years. I'm so happy to see that's unlikely to be the case with e-books.

If you buy a book from the Kindle store, by the way, and the publisher withdraws it from the store, Amazon still stores it for you in your Kindle archives so you can download it on to other devices on your account. I have one like that.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 8:09:49 PM PDT
Naomi Kramer says:
On the other hand, ebooks go 'out of print' less often than print books, because an extra print run (and warehousing, and returns, and all the other costs that go with it) is never required.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 6, 2011, 8:10:45 PM PDT
Naomi Kramer says:
GAH! Stop giving better answers faster. *huff* :-D

Posted on Jan 9, 2012, 8:47:06 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 9, 2012, 8:51:48 PM PST
I don't see the reasoning behind you NOT owning the book after purchasing it. If I bought a book from the store, the money goes to: the retailer to showcase & sell the book, the author for writing the book, the cost of creating, printing and shipping the book, and the advertising that was shelled out for promoting the book. That book I bring home can be read by dozens of people, resold, read by dozens more, or just sit on my shelf and be read by one. There is no restriction put on that book as to how many can read it, or how many times it can be resold - sales of which neither the publisher or author get compensation for. Because it's a sale of personal property; I paid for it and can do with it as I like. But you're going to deny me access to a book I purchased electronically because I want to read it on different computers/pads/pods? The cost is less (I assume) because there was no need to pay to have physical books created and shipped to the store. It's an electronic file that can be duplicated millions of times to those who wish to purchase it. I understand the idea behind someone making endless copies and selling them, thus reaping a profit and not paying the writer or publisher for their stake in making the book available in the first place. But I don't like the idea that when I eventually sell my device that I lose all those books I paid for. I just got my ereader and now I'm wondering if it's worth to spend money on books I don't ultimately own.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 9, 2012, 8:55:31 PM PST
ScottBooks says:
Wanna buy a used mp3? I have hundreds...

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012, 12:50:53 PM PST
L says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012, 12:52:49 PM PST
Since the post you're responding to is from August of 2011, I'm guessing the poster has made up her mind without your help.

Posted on Dec 19, 2012, 12:59:08 PM PST
The Blade says:
Zombies! I see zombies!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012, 1:03:31 PM PST
This is true of paper books, as well. You don't own the WORDS. You just own the paper & glue.

GAH! I'm cornered! OMG! Please, no. I have children. Wait. I have children, so they've already sucked out my brains!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012, 1:08:17 PM PST
The Blade says:
That is one of the good things about being a parent. When the Zombie Apocalypse happens, Zombies will ignore us as we are not really a food source. We might be fun to chase, in a shuffling/shambling sort of way, but we won't be seen as food.

A real advantage, that.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012, 1:09:38 PM PST
Shambling! OMG. That's what I do every morning. Yep, yep, yep.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2012, 1:32:20 PM PST
The Blade says:
LOl! Me too. ;-)
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Discussion in:  Kindle forum
Participants:  25
Total posts:  58
Initial post:  Aug 30, 2011
Latest post:  Dec 20, 2012

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