Breaking DRM On E-Books Becomes Illegal In Canada

Canada has been drafting a bill regarding e-books for quite a while and now that the bill has been implemented, it has been discovered that it puts lots of curbs even on the use of legally purchased content. For starters, you can’t even unlock a legally purchased e-book in Canada.


Naturally, the new conditions implemented by the bill make it very hard for users to see any upside of legal purchases. The bill does come with a number of fair dealing provisions which seems to give the illusion that the end-users will have a lot of freedom.

However, it essentially trashes all this freedom itself when it says that the users can’t remove a digital lock if one is present. For instance, if one online retailer sells an e-book with a lock which can be readable only on its own e-reader, you can’t unlock the book and read it on some other tablet.

Nonetheless, there are certain exemptions to this no-unlock policy. For instance, if you have any kind of reading disability for which you need to modify the looks of a book’s content, you can unlock it. Moreover, although unlocking in itself has been deemed illegal, you can still unlock the book and read it across different e-readers.

The sellers won’t be able to sue you because they can only go after you if they incur any damage. When you use the book for personal purposes, they don’t incur any damage and hence, can’t legally sue you. Still, the bill does show that the Canadian government has given into the pressure of the U.S. publishers and this can lead to further curbs being placed on the legal use of e-books.

Source: Michael Geist

Courtesy: TeleRead

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Salman Latif is a software engineer with a specific interest in social media, big data and real-world solutions using the two.Other than that, he is a bit of a gypsy. He also writes in his own blog. You can find him on Google+ and Twitter .

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