eBook Cheat Sheet

Ebook Cheat Sheet
Ebook Cheat Sheet

I was asked a few weeks ago to create a cheat sheet for eBooks so our staff could have something to reference and handout to the public. Luckily I had just read a very helpful post by Jason Griffey that really summed up a lot of issues with eBooks, file types and DRM. I asked in the comments if I could adapt the post and he said it was ok. So I did.

Since we will be getting Overdrive soon we put this on the other side.

Here is what some of us put together. Hope you find it useful.

Ebook Cheat Sheet

10 thoughts on “eBook Cheat Sheet

  1. That sheet is a bit incorrect and out of date already.

    1) Although Barnes & Noble can read library ePub books, you’re leaving the impression that Barnes & Noble Nookbooks are similarly universal. They are not. B&N uses a mutated customized version of Adobe DRM.

    2) You left out Kobo, which is also a popular eBook device and is available in Borders and, I think, WalMart.

    3) Kindle books can also be read by Kindle apps.

    4) iOS devices now have Bluefire Reader which can also read “classic” Adobe DRM library books.

    5) Soon OverDrive will release its iPhone/iPod Touch which can also do library eBooks.

    1. True on all accounts. We were shooting for something that could fit on one piece of paper, hit the high points and make sense to the general public. It’s not perfect by any stretch but it wasn’t meant to be. We are using it as a (very) simple introduction. Many of the people asking us about eBooks are new to the format and are looking for basic information. I’d like to revise it soon or make a new one that goes more in depth.

      Thanks for the critique.

  2. “If you buy an eBook from B&N you can read it on your Sony device.”

    I understand that B&N purchased eBooks have a variant DRM on them and cannot be opened on other readers (i.e. Sony) that do not support that variant ePub. Adobe just this week released an update that makes it possible for other readers to recognize and share the B&N variant DRM. However, you can read a standard ePub from other book stores on the Nook.

  3. This is a more detailed press release from Adobe explaining. Will Sony and others adopt this? If yes, then B&N variant DRM would become a standard, if you will.


    Quote from Adobe:

    Social, password-based content protection

    The release of Content Server 4.1 enables “social” password protection for PDF and EPUB eBooks. Like before, Content Server operators can protect PDF and EPUB files using identity-based authorization. Under this identity method, eBook files are authorized to a specific user who authenticates using his/her Adobe ID and password. With the release of Content Server 4.1, publishers and content distributors now have the additional option to protect eBooks using “password-only” authorization. Under password-only authorization, eBooks are not associated with an Adobe ID; readers only need to enter a password to access the protected content.

    This new option enables a new level of flexible “social” permissions for publishers and book distributors. With this option, readers only need to enter a password to access content and are enabled to share their eBooks with those with whom they entrust their password. Because Content Server 4 operators determine the password requirements, some operators may choose to make the password something users are unlikely to share (retail account password, credit card number, etc.). This is not a requirement, however, and other operators will choose to enable passwords that facilitate sharing. For security, any password users enter to authorize content is converted to a non-reversible one-way hash of the string.

    Devices and applications that use Reader Mobile 9.2 SDK will support files protected by this new password-only authorization.

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