DRM is good for something

Many people are frustrated with Digital Rights Management preventing them from doing to music and e-books what they are used to doing with computer files – backups, convenience of having your media on all of your devices, and for some, piracy.  Of course, it’s the third that drives the need for DRM in the first place.

Recently I’ve been exposed to a use of DRM that I find very, very good.  I’ve been using my iPad to access my library’s Overdrive section – essentially eBooks from the library.  From the convenience of my couch at home or while away on vacation, I can browse online the books available, check them out, and download them to my iPad (or my kids’ kindle, etc) immediately.   At the end of the two week lending period, if I’ve not already deleted it/turned it back in, it automatically deletes for me.   No more having to remember to do so.

This is GREAT!   Depending on the availability of the material, I may never have to buy a book again.   I’m finding that most of the county library websites I’ve visited have Overdrive collections as well.  My Fort Bend County account does not give access to a whole lot, but I also have a Harris County library card, and they have a lot more selection.   I checked out the Houston Public Library site this morning, and it has a fairly extensive collection as well, so I am going to try to go today and get a library card.    I can see that “collecting library accounts” could soon be a fun pastime.   🙂   The Houston Public Library offers accounts to any Texas resident… perhaps Austin, San Antonio, and Dallas have similar offerings.   Time to take advantage of tax dollars being spent!