J.C. here again. Hopefully by now some or most of you who caught my last commentary about DRM (Digital Rights Management) have taken time to check out the articles I linked. Maybe some of you went further and sought out other viewpoints (rather than just opinions) on the topic, for you shouldn’t assume that those articles present all there is. As for myself, obviously I can only offer you my opinion, perhaps lacking the necessary level of support to turn it into a viewpoint. Yes, verifiable support is the difference between a viewpoint and just an opinion; some of you should know that old vulgar simile about opinions and everyone having one. That being said, I’ve a brief time window this morning to ramble on a bit…
Okay, first, just J.C. here, as if anyone can’t guess considering the topic. Second, I am no expert on the legal issues surrounding DRM (Digital Rights Management), as adapted for ebooks from its failed use in the digital music industry; but I’m always (re)learning a little something more. Third, I am still somewhat ambivalent and conflicted about all of this, even now.
As an author, I want to get paid, just like anyone who offers a product or service. How else am I going to make a living at what I want to do, which is write fiction? In theory, that’s what most people think DRM is all about. Well, aside from the publishers and vendors getting their cut, which any good business deserves. The problem is that DRM may not be about those things as much as we think. It’s also, perhaps moreso, about locking in customers via proprietary control. Some publishers (and even authors) are beginning shine a hard light on this.
On the other hand, tugging at the other side of heart and mind, spirit and Ka/Te/unique essence, are my readers… every author’s readers… anyone who loves books of any kind in any form. I believe in the right to use ebooks the same way we use print books… sharing with family, taking them wherever we want to go, and not answering to anyone for the property for which we paid good money, and no one telling us what to do with our books.
Caught between these two seemingly conflicted considerations, well, like most nonsense in the corporate (not “public”) and political worlds of my country, I will side with true citizens, true people, every time and even to my supposed loss. But maybe it isn’t a loss at all.
Compared to others, I’m not qualified (yet) to talk about why DRM is not what it has been made out to appear; yes, I have my opinion, but that’s not good enough for you. It’s time to get informed as readers (and writers) and tell the pundits, gurus, and self-appointed bellowers to shove off. We decide for ourselves what’s really at stake.
I’m still having to think things through where DRM is concerned in our own private “Tales” project; it’s all rather confusing. As to the Noble Dead Saga, we have no say over those ebooks, so don’t send us a lot of notes about that, because is won’t get anywhere.
Here are some links below to worthwhile commentaries (though perhaps old by internet standards). If you know of others, speak up and tell us. Things are changing out there in the e-frontier for books and it’s not all just good or bad… but it could be getting better on average, and more so with every set of eyes that opens. I’ll share more as time and my stumbling about reveals to me.
Publishers begin removing DRM from ebooks…
The laws on Removing DRM from ebooks (and other things) are very confusing
(JC: And they shouldn’t be)
Recently many users of Blogger (with or without their own domain name) found that articles/posts over a week old with internal links to their own site’s static “pages” were all broken. Visitors clicking one of those links were getting “404 Page Not Found” errors. The same is happening for any other site worldwide that has linked to some static pages on a Blogger site from elsewhere. NobleDead.org was affected as well for just its “Tales” and “Books” pages… and J.C. burned even more time trying to figure it out.
All articles/news from now on will have links that work for the “Tales” and “Books” pages. But if you go to an older article/post from our site, its internal links to those pages will not work. You can still find those needed pages through our site’s main menu.
So what happened? No one is fully certain, but as said it happened because of another Google code push without adequate notification to all of its systems’ users. And no one from Google has so far talked with anyone raising this issue on the support forums.
Originally, when a static page is created and given a title on Blogger, that title was used to create the virtual “file” name for the page as seen in its URL and used for linking. Later, site owners could edit that page’s title more appropriately and the virtual file name would remain unaffected. Not any more, and anyone who did change a page’s content suddenly found the virtual file name for that page was changed to match whatever title had been added later. Any further editing of the page title also caused further changes to the virtual file name… and hence the full URL by which links are created to that page. Endless cycles of broken links are still continuing even now.
Much as J.C. does not need any more on his plate cutting into writing, he is looking into a more permanent fix. This is not the first time Google has done something like this, and it won’t be the last. NobleDead.org will never go down or disappear, but we ask for your patience for a little while. Please report any new or strange difficulty you have on our site via the “Contact” page while we look for an ultimate solution to all of this great Gobbler… um, we mean Google(r)… nonsense.
KoboBooks.com finally opened up its e-publishing portal four days ago, and we were waiting and ready. All currently released Tales from the world of the Noble Dead Saga have been published to their online offerings and most are now popping up in their international sites. [Read on for more on this.]
You can find Kobo links on our “Tales” and “Books” pages at NobleDead.org. Oh, and of course Kobo does have free apps for all platforms; you will find links to those as well.
NOTE: Homeward, I: The Game Piece by Barb has yet to complete the publishing shunt to the Kobo catalog after four days. We are looking into any problems and will update when glitches get worked out. Since the Homeward sequence stories are autonomous, this should not be a problem. You can always pick up the The Game Piece later if you are a Kobo customer.
For Our International Readers…
Like Amazon’s AZW/MOBI format, Kobo sells internationally in the EPUB format, the true industry standard for e-publications. This is a bit of relief, as we have heard from some frustrated fans abroad who want access to our privately published works. So if you are outside the US territories, and you use something other than a Kindle app/device, you can now get your hands on our “Tales” at KoboBooks.com
- people being able to access epublications (ebooks and more) without an ereader device, and
- what to know about consumer rights concerning purchased epublications, including the right to read that recently purchased ebook on any device personally owned.
Yes, you can read that ebook on any of your devices that can handle it natively or with an application or app. How is the only trick, and more on that part in a future article. For those who are curious and adventurous, you can do some investigating on your own by looking at Calibre. There are some other options as well.
One thing coming down the line is the ability to simply use a browser for your ebooks, both in purchasing and reading. Combine that with coming improvements in computer/device screen resolution and pixel interpolation, and it all sounds pretty good. But wait…
J.C. and Barb received the copyeditor’s notes for S3B2: The Dog in the Dark and are going over that whole manuscript now while working on the next one already in the planning process (S3B3, untitled as yet). Needless to say, the scramble is on, though that’s always the way of things this time of year. Mid-summer and over the year’s end holidays are always hectic. Still no finalized version for the cover of S3B2, but as soon as that is officially settled, we’ll share it with you.
A few changes have been made (with more to come) at NobleDead.org. Some similar changes will follow at BarbHendee.org as time permits. None of this is truly earth shattering, as we’re just cleaning up and streamlining in preparation for additional content in the future. So here’s what’s up and what’s coming… sooner or later…
This new release is now live and available at Barnes & Noble as well. You can find the direct link to it by visiting the Tales from the world of the Noble Dead Saga page at NobleDead.org. [And yes, this title remains available at Amazon.]
We’re still waiting for the Kobo e-publishing portal (for Kobo ereader devices) to come online. With a little luck, that should happen soon, as July was the target last mentioned by Kobo.com.
A recent re-experiment in listing “tales” for sale via Google Books (“Google Play”) produced negative changes (without our consent) when the first work went live for purchase. This in turn had a negative impact on listings with other vendors. All “tales” were immediately pulled from sale via Google Books.
Works in the “Tales” project will not be offered through Google Books for the foreseeable future; J.C. has burned too much time with this one vendor already. As mentioned before, anyone with an Android based phone, tablet, or other device can easily download and install an “app” for any other major online ebook vendor.
Homeward, III: The Sapphire
Short story, 12k+ words; English Only
This fourth offering in Tales from the world of the Noble Dead Saga should (again) please our fans of the undead. For more information please visit the “Tales” page at NobleDead.org or the product pages at Barnes & Noble and Amazon. [Also available at all international Amazon outlets.]
NOTE: This story has been published as well to Barnes & Noble but has not yet appeared for sale in their listings. Keep an eye out for it if you are a Nook or Nook app user; we will also post notice ourselves when it appears there.
While you’re at our site, you can also have a look at the previous “Tales” releases in the “Homeward” and “Bones of the Earth” sequences.
Though set in the world of the Noble Dead Saga, the “Tales” stories and sequences do not require knowledge of the saga’s books/series. You can easily pick up and read one as your first venture in this world.
You Don't Need an EReader
Apps for Windows, OS X, Android and iOS devices to purchase and read ebooks are available for free. If you later buy a device, all of your previously purchased books from the device's vendor will load to your new device as well as still being available through your vendor-based app.