[LMB] AKICOTL: OT: Kindle restrictions?

Francis Turner francis.turner at gmail.com
Sat Apr 4 15:34:29 BST 2009

On Sat, Apr 4, 2009 at 3:21 PM, Pat Mathews <mathews55 at msn.com> wrote:
> According to Locus this month, Amazon is making sure you can't read
> anything on the Kindle you didn't buy from Amazon. IS that correct?
> because I've made up my mind to buy a reader and was all set on Kindle
> (a VERY close tie with Sony) until reading that. Can anyone enlighten me?
> Thanks,
> Pat

Amazon are attempting to make it impossible for you to buy DRMed
mobipocket format works to read on your kindle from any other source
but Amazon. They have done this by attempting to suppress a program
called KindlePID.py which lets you determine what the Mobipocket PID
is for your Kindle (or for the Kindle for Iphone app). Without the PID
you cannot get a DRMed book to be read on your Kindle. However
non-DRMed books are still supported at present.

My real issue with the Kindle is the lack of control you have since
thanks to Whispernet they can in theory upgrade your Kindle to remove
support for something else without asking. They appear to have already
done that for Text to Speech as this Grauniad article by Cory Doctorow


Personally I would be very very suspicious of Amazon because they have
the ability to completely lock you into the Kindle and Kindle Store.

Sony, so far, is not doing the lock in thing. Indeed it seems to be
consciously doing the opposite with its support for open standards.


Faber's Fourth Law:
  Necessity is the mother of strange bedfellows.

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