Based on some of the comments from my last posting, my reader and writer selves have continued their conversation about e-books. They are also really hoping a lawyer shows up at some point to help explain some of the implications for writers (and readers) of the new user exceptions in C-32:
Reader: Oh sure, just like I've read every word of my car's warranty. What's your point?
Writer: Well, it says here “You may not separate any individual component of the Device Software for use on another device or another computer, may not transfer it for use on another device or use it, or any portion of it, over a network and may not sell, rent, lease, lend, distribute or sublicense or otherwise assign any rights to the Software in whole or in part.”
Reader: Okay... and since I don’t want to do any of those things, I’m cool with that.
Writer: But it says lend. You can’t lend!
Reader: I can’t lend the software. Who “lends” software anyway? Isn’t that sort of the same as giving away an unauthorized copy of software?
Reader: So, I can still lend the book, as long as I’m lending the e-reader with it?
Writer: I don’t see anything in here that would stop you. Just a bunch of stuff about selling, renting, leasing, distributing or broadcasting.
Reader: Why would I do that stuff?
Writer: Well, selling… I don’t know. You sell old books from time to time, don’t you?
Reader: Actually, no, I give my old books away, but I see your point. Not much room here for a used digital book store to open up.
Writer: Of course, if the prices for e-books stay the same, there’s little point to a used store, since the new product is so darned affordable.
Wait a second – here’s something nasty.
Reader: What now?
Writer: It says here that Kobo is going to be tracking what you read, when you read it and even what you think about it.
Man, it’s like Nineteen Eighty-Four or some equally terrifying dystopian future. Your device there is like some sort of wiretap Kobo can use to spy on you and your reading habits. I don't know, dude, I feel an evil wind rising.
Reader: Calm down, calm down, you're not writing a teenage vampire saga here. Doesn't Kobo already know what book I’m reading? I sort of told them what I was reading when I bought the book from them, didn’t I?
Writer: But, what if you want to make notes, or highlight anything. They’ll know what you find interesting. I'm really thinking it's time to start running into the streets screaming.
Reader: Well, first of all, this device doesn’t let me highlight or make notes, and the only bookmarking it does is to the last page read. It’s really low-tech, which is part of why I like it. Second of all, if I’m going to make notes while reading, I’ll write them with a pen in a paper notebook. I assume Kobo can’t see into my notebook?
Writer: Still, don’t you find that whole server stuff a bit creepy?
Reader: Creepier than Google photographing my house and putting it on the Internet? Creepier than Amazon.com “recommending” a new book to me based on my previous purchases? No, I’d say my Kobo is a whole lot less creepy than those two things.
Writer: Good point. But, I don't know, it still seems too restrictive to me. What if you decide later on to buy a Kindle instead? You'd have to buy your whole library over again.
Reader: Because those books would be different if I read them over again on a Kindle?
Reader: I don't see the problem. First of all, if I buy a Kobo, I probably won't buy a Kindle. What am I, some sort of tech-gadget sucker who needs to get every new thing as soon as it comes out? How many e-readers does one person need? Second of all, if I do go ahead and get a Kindle later on, then I'll read Kindle books on that device, and keep the Kobo to reread any of my old Kobo books later on.