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Amazon's new Kindle e-book reader is evil and dangerous - Journal of Omnifarious

Dec. 4th, 2007

09:00 pm - Amazon's new Kindle e-book reader is evil and dangerous

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The essay The Future of Reading (A Play in Six Acts) lays it all out.

For those of you who haven't read it, I highly recommend Richard Stallman's A Right to Read.

And for those of you who think that your convenience is worth any price... *shrug* I have nothing to say to you other than that we have no common ground, and in this we are bitter enemies.

Current Mood: [mood icon] worried


[User Picture]
Date:December 5th, 2007 05:57 am (UTC)
Stop it man, you're scaring me.

I still remember reading 1984, in 1984, and the teacher telling us to pay attention, "It could still happen."
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Date:December 5th, 2007 06:54 pm (UTC)
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[User Picture]
Date:December 6th, 2007 06:49 am (UTC)
The cost of all new technology is expensive at first. When demand increases, price drops. Not all e-readers require the presence of a computer. In fact, the Kindle specifically does not. One of its benefits is that it wirelessly connects to its bookstore the way a cell phone does. There are no connection charges and no looking for a wifi hotspot. This is very convenient ... or would be if there are sufficient titles to purchase.

As someone who is often in the middle of several books at once, and as someone who was a student, I can tell you that carrying around 5 or more large hardbound books is definately NOT more portable than an e-reader, with or without the laptop. I currently carry around my 17" laptop just so I can read the books that are on it. If I had a way to put the 100 pounds of text books I had in college into something that weighed less than a pound, you bet I would have jumped at that chance! As it is, I put the 4 or 5 books I read now into my laptop, because I *will* finish one or more book while I'm out of the house before I can get back to get a new one. And let's not forget those people whose careers require they read and access large amounts of tech manuals on a regular basis. A library of tech manuals on site is definately not portable, but an e-reader would give them the opportunity to have the required documents at their fingertips while on site or with clients.

The DRMs need to catch up with the times. I totally understand the fear of having one's artistic endeavors stolen (as an artist myself, I really do get this), but the extreme the various media industries are going to in order to "protect" their products make it virtually impossible (legally) for us to even use the products we are purchasing. Once these stupid regulations are removed, the idea of a book reader that stores hundreds of titles that is the same size and weight (or less than) an average paperback is a wonderful idea. I'm eagerly awaiting the time when the idea will become reality ... because with the current copyright laws and spy ability, it's not quite reality at this point. But I'm hopeful.
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[User Picture]
Date:December 5th, 2007 10:47 pm (UTC)
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Date:December 7th, 2007 05:43 pm (UTC)

It gets better...

After reading the information from the first link, I felt it necessary to read more, so I started poking into Amazon's Privacy Notice.

"To help us make e-mails more useful and interesting, we often receive a confirmation when you open e-mail from Amazon.com if your computer supports such capabilities."

"We might receive information about you from other sources and add it to our account information."

"We release account and other personal information when we believe release is appropriate to comply with the law; enforce or apply our Conditions of Use and other agreements; or protect the rights, property, or safety of Amazon.com, our users, or others. This includes exchanging information with other companies and organizations for fraud protection and credit risk reduction."

I'm not a private person, I don't usually care... but this added to your link above, well, this does disturb me. It does make me thankful that I've not yet made any purchases from Amazon, but it's not likely limited to just *them*.


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