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As I read Robert Galbraith's The Silkworm in paper book format (the first paper book I've read in eons), I am reminded how much I prefer my Sony PRS 950 ereader.   Ease of holding, page turning, boo

I very rarely pay for the content I read on my Kindle. It's about 70 percent from online sources (via Readability), 30 percent free books.


This certainly relates to Sneak's earlier comment. With few exceptions, if I buy a book, I want to put it on a shelf and look at it, not have it saved for me in the cloud.

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But one thing I don't get. Do you save the books somewhere?


I think it depends where you get it from. If you download from kindle, I think it stays on your device, the Amazon cloud our iTunes. I'm not sure you can get a kindle book into a personal folder.

I also assume that when you get a book from Kindle you're only licensing it. You don't really own it. (Thus, you can lend it through Kindle's lending service.) I think with respect to iTunes music, for example, I think there is a lot of uncertainty as to what happens to an iTunes music library if the iTunes account holder dies. I don't think it can just be transferred to someone else through a will. (Maybe this has been resolved, I don't know.)

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I'm confused, then. So you definitely get to keep this stuff for the rest of your life? I read you as implying there could be questions as to what happens with the license as these technologies develop.


I'm fairly certain you can keep them for the rest of your life. Whether they upgrade to new technologies -- I doubt it's automatic. The question is what happens when you die. Apparently Bruce Willis got angry when he learned that he could not bequeath his mammoth iTunes library to his kids in his will. (The Bruce Willis story is probably an urban myth.) Whether the iTunes account can simply continue with his kids having the logon information, I don't know.


As for technology changes, for example, Apple started by offering very low-res music files which were DRM'd so you couldn't copy them or play them on another format. Now Apple offers better low-res files at 256ACC, without DRM. You can make a certain number of copies and can reformat the files to play on other devices. If you purchased the old music and pay for iTunes match ($25) you can get your old lower-res DRM files upgraded to the 256ACC non-DRM. (Assuming Apple has those files available.) Apple currently does not sell CD quality or higher, and probably has no plans to do so in the near future. However, if they do, I would be surprised if they offered a free upgrade to the better formats given the much large size of the files -- perhaps at a discount to purchasing them new. I have no idea whether Apple has any legal obligation to make sure that iTunes will always support these lower format if and when they upgrade (but I wouldn't worry about it because I don't think they have any intention of upgrading).


I'm sure Nathan has actually read the iTunes and Kindle user agreements and will come along and provide a more complete and accurate explanation.

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I understand that if all Kindle users behaved like me, Amazon would probably have to quadruple the price of the devices.


Only if their business plan involved making money. We're not there yet.

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