24 February

Publishing

Why DRM might not always the best choice to make?

You may have sometimes purchased eBooks that you were able to use only on a single app or device. The reason for this is DRM, when expanded digital rights management. The technology is used by eBook conversion companies to restrict the usage of files to a limited number of digital technologies.

It is understandable that publishers and authors invest a lot of time and effort in creating a new book. So, they will surely embrace steps to avoid piracy and DRM is a widely used option for that. It applies to Kindle book conversion as well. Using DRM, eBook conversion into several formats and it’s sharing on different devices and with other users can be avoided.

DRM incorporated by an expert service provider in India doubtlessly offers immense level of protection but the discomfort experienced by the customers is a grave concern.

Now what will happen if DRM is removed? Earlier people used to illegally download mp3s on Napster. This was in fact the only solution they had for accessing music on multiple devices as strict regulations were imposed by DRM. Also when Apple started using DRM for its iTunes files, negative feedback from their customers piled up. This made them to remove the restriction in 2009 and since then iTunes emerged to be the most lucrative music store globally. Studies made by some of the reputed service providers revealed that removal of DRM restrictions promoted more search as well as sharing among the customers. In addition to that it also paved way for more sales even among obscure customers that would have otherwise detoured.

The pros and cons of DRM

DRM is one of the most crucial decisions that you need to make at the time of uploading your Ebook on the Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) platform. What you need to know is that once you get your book published you cannot change the DRM.

DRM is important in the sense that it allows authors to enable an additional protection layer to prevent your copyrighted work from being shared without authorization. Unfortunately, even if you opt for DRM, you will still not be able to prevent piracy completely. Cyber criminals may still be able to find a way to remove the DRM from your work. Some authors prefer to attach strong importance to DRM because they want to make sure that their works always remain safeguarded against unauthorized access at all costs.

DRM cons

DRM has penalizing impacts on customers. Readers typically prefer enjoying reading their digital books on different devices. When authors enable DRM, their readers may be disallowed access to their Ebooks through non-Kindle platforms. Customers may find this experience to be extremely annoying and thus may lead to decreased book sales as readers are now most likely to opt-out from buying DRM-enabled books. So when you apply DRM, you are actually applying a lock or restricted entry condition to your book. This lock may prevent you from making more sales. This lock does prevent cyber criminals from getting access to your book readily, but it does not prevent piracy incidents completely.

Though most publishers demand companies offering digital conversion and eBook conversion services to incorporate DRM, they have started understanding the risk this imposes on customer satisfaction. Striking a perfect balance between eBook protection and customer contentment is one of the major challenges being faced by authors and publishers today.

Some service providers know effective utilization of other alternatives to DRM. Adding a digital watermark that contains details like name of the customer, his email ID and other relevant information is a great feasible option.

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