Here’s Why Digital Rights Management Is Stupid And Anti-Consumer

Comparisons of downloadable books and music to their ancient, tangible predecessors are an old, old meme, but sometimes the comparison applies. For example: if reader Synimatik had bought a paperback book a few months ago and picked it up to read now, the book’s pages wouldn’t magically glue shut just because the credit card she normally uses at the bookstore has expired. That’s how it works when you want to read a book downloaded from Barnes & Noble, though.

Yesterday, I tried to download an ebook I paid for, and previously put on my Nook, a few months ago. When I tried, I got an error message stating I could not download the book because the credit card on file had expired. But, I already paid for it. Who cares if the credit card is expired? It has long since been paid for, so the status of the card on file has nothing to do with my ability to download said book. I didn’t see anything in the terms of service about this either, but it’s possible I missed it.

This is just one more reason to either not buy ebooks, or strip the drm off of the ones you purchase so you can you the book you BUY on all your devices without having to purchase multiple copies for no reason and have access to something you already bought when you want it.

Stripping DRM from e-purchases is usually against the vendor’s terms of use, but if you still want to go ahead and back up content you’ve paid for, you can learn how to do that from this Lifehacker article.