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Apple Clarifies iBooks Author Licensing 144

Posted by Soulskill
from the internet-gets-mad-when-you-get-grabby dept.
bonch writes "After drawing criticism over iBooks Author's licensing language, Apple has modified it in a software update to make clear that Apple is claiming rights to the .ibook format itself and not the content therein: '[The license restriction] does not apply to the content of such works when distributed in a form that does not include files in the .ibooks format.' In other words, the content may be sold on competing book stores as long as it is not packaged using iBooks Author."
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Apple Clarifies iBooks Author Licensing

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  • by BasilBrush (643681) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:04PM (#38922477)

    Hands up all those people who didn't already realise that's what it meant.

    • by WrongSizeGlass (838941) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:06PM (#38922497)

      Hands up all those people who didn't already realise that's what it meant.

      I thought they were laying a trap so the next time an author republished the work Apple could sue them. /sarcasm

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        That wouldn't be unprecedented. Numerous free web hosting services and some other types (youtube type things etc.) had clauses in their terms of service that using their service involved relinquishing your copyright to anything you'd put up in their service. Apple's greedy enough that they would concievably do that.

        • "wouldn't be unprecedented", "Numerous free...services", "Apple's greedy"

          You're just full of empirical type information, aren't you.
    • by DogDude (805747) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:06PM (#38922499) Homepage
      Ambiguity, when it comes to working with a litigious company, is not a good thing.
      • by Overly Critical Guy (663429) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:12PM (#38922571)

        As opposed to all those big-name companies that never file lawsuits. For example,

      • by snowgirl (978879) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:38PM (#38922825) Journal

        Ambiguity, when it comes to working with a litigious company, is not a good thing.

        Ambiguity, when dealing with a boilerplate contract, is always interpreted as strictly against the drafting party as possible...

        • by migla (1099771)

          Are you saying that's the way it works in practise? Not saying it isn't, and hoping that it is, but I thought your justice system was completely wack, in practise.

          • by migla (1099771)

            ...eh, by "your" I mean "the american", and by "america" I mean the US.

          • by snowgirl (978879) on Friday February 03, 2012 @09:39PM (#38923285) Journal

            Are you saying that's the way it works in practise? Not saying it isn't, and hoping that it is, but I thought your justice system was completely wack, in practise.

            Yes, this is the way it works in practice in US Common Law.

            US law might be whacked, but it's still not really any more whacked than UK law. I mean, at least here the truth is an absolute defense to defamation.

            • by migla (1099771)

              Thanks. Upon further pondering, arbitrary logic in court would be too outrageous. The injustice lies at a more abstract level. Also, I seem to not have spellchecking in my browser.

            • by Grishnakh (216268)

              Well of course, we inherited this whacked Common Law system from those morons. We should have given them the finger in yet another way back in 1776 and adopted French Civil Code (or whatever the French were using at the time, as Napoleon hadn't quite come along yet to make his revisions). The idea of a court system where the judges and the lawyers are two entirely separate professions, going to two separate schools, makes a lot of sense when you see the shenanigans going on in the US legal system.

              • by snowgirl (978879)

                Well of course, we inherited this whacked Common Law system from those morons. We should have given them the finger in yet another way back in 1776 and adopted French Civil Code (or whatever the French were using at the time, as Napoleon hadn't quite come along yet to make his revisions). The idea of a court system where the judges and the lawyers are two entirely separate professions, going to two separate schools, makes a lot of sense when you see the shenanigans going on in the US legal system.

                I definitely agree... although everyone now tends to be using the German Civil Code, as it's very well engineered... (stereotyping not intended)

                • by Kartu (1490911)
                  Joahana Heffner's decision regarding rectangular devices with rounded corner tells me there are in fact serious problems in German courts.
              • by hairyfeet (841228)
                Actually there would be an easy way to fix it, in both criminal and civil, but it would take away power from the uberrich so it'd never fly. Simply have both side pay into a common fund which is split equally to pay for the two sides lawyers. no paying anything other than one half of the fund. this would discourage using "dream team" lawyers because by spending that outrageous amount you would also be giving the other side an equal amount. As it is now both the rich and the state can use virtually unlimited
    • by iluvcapra (782887) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:07PM (#38922515)

      What one knows it means and what one claims it means are two different things. The "Apple hates us for our freedom" crowd never really cared what was meant, it was just another club to troll with.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        When you're dealing with a company that tried to patent the shape of a rectangle, and whose main business strategy is "rebrand old technology then say we invented it" you would be stupid to ignore such a thing.

    • Of course it was obvious, but some people are always on the lookout for things to get upset about. It feels good to be angry, and it makes people listen to them.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Of course it was obvious, but some people are always on the lookout for things to get upset about. It feels good to be angry, and it makes people listen to them.

        Other things that get on my nerves are genocide and tyranny. And to a lesser extent corporate lackeys.

    • It was perfectly obvious, and I think Apple is just trying to divert people's attention by clouding the issue.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by bhagwad (1426855)
      It's still ridiculous. Imagine if the EULA of an IDE like Eclipse were to demand that any programs compiled using it have to give a cut to the creators of Eclipse!

      I'm not saying it's illegal. It's just that Apple is a jerk for doing it.
      • by Overly Critical Guy (663429) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:28PM (#38922721)

        Apple doesn't want to provide a free tool to be used for producing ebooks on competing platforms. I fail to see how that's being a "jerk". It's called running a business.

        Don't like it? Don't use iBooks Author.

        • by Kalriath (849904)

          But then they make it next to impossible to get something on the iBookStore anyway. As it is, they still only accept big names and tell everyone else to go jump and sign up with an "aggregator" like Ingram (who likely takes another 30% or more). So really, they weren't going to sign you up anyway so what benefit do they gain by preventing you using the output with other publishers?

          • by Karlt1 (231423) on Friday February 03, 2012 @09:25PM (#38923201)

            But then they make it next to impossible to get something on the iBookStore anyway

            http://www.macnews.com/2010/08/10/gregs-bite-how-publish-apple-ibook [macnews.com]

            Book content requirements: ISBNs for all titles you intend to distribute. You must be able to deliver your book content in EPUB format, passing EpubCheck 1.0.5.
            Financial requirements: A US tax ID, a valid iTunes Store account, with a credit card on file. .....

            You must have an ISBN number issued for your book and you should reserve the title (see #1 and #2 below). Getting a bar code might also be a good idea. You must have a unique ISBN number for each book you post to the iBooks store. If you look at the jacket on any book, you will notice a ISBN number. It costs 25 for each ISBN number for each book. That unique number identifies your book in a giant data base along with the author's name, date of being published, title etc. You apply for a ISBN number at the following URL: http://www.isbn.org/standards/home/isbn/us/application.asp [isbn.org] .

            You can get a book title registered to prevent confusion by having an identical title with another book by going to: http://www.bowkerlink.com/corrections/common/home.asp [bowkerlink.com] . This is free.

            You may also get a special bar code from the same web site at the following link: http://www.bowkerbarcode.com/barcode/ [bowkerbarcode.com] .

            • by Kalriath (849904)

              I actually read the sign up page for iBookStore authoring. The bit the article you linked to forgets to mention is "Note: Meeting these requirements and submitting an application does not guarantee that Apple will work directly with you. You may still be referred to an Apple-approved aggregator."

              A real pain in the ass is that you also can't use your existing iTunes Connect (iPhone/Mac App Store) account to sell books. You have to create a new Apple ID.

      • Why on earth should Apple spend significant amounts of money to develop a free tool which could be used by suppliers of competitors?

        They invested a significant amount of money in it. They aren't charging for it. So it's only sensible that they get the advantage of it, and not their competitors.

        Businesses are not charities.

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by bhagwad (1426855)

          Why on earth should Apple spend significant amounts of money to develop a free tool...

          Because that's what "nice" companies do. And I like doing business with "nice" companies. Google for example makes my life easier for free with great tools and so I don't mind buying from them when I have to.

          Since Apple isn't a "nice" company, I avoid doing business with them. Simple.

          • by BasilBrush (643681) on Friday February 03, 2012 @09:51PM (#38923377)

            Because that's what "nice" companies do.

            No it's not. Companies act to make a profit. Not to be nice. All that differs is their business model for making money out of their activities.

            Google for example makes my life easier for free with great tools and so I don't mind buying from them when I have to.

            They just have a different business model. They make their money on advertising. That's why they provide those tools. Not because they are nice.

            BTW, there's no Santa Claus either. Sorry about that.

            • by bhagwad (1426855)
              Sorry, a person is nice by their actions in totality. I like doing business with Google and I trust Google because they're nice. So "nice" IS a viable business model if it gains the trust of your customers.
              • by BasilBrush (643681) on Friday February 03, 2012 @10:46PM (#38923681)

                Sorry, a person is nice by their actions in totality. I like doing business with Google and I trust Google because they're nice. So "nice" IS a viable business model if it gains the trust of your customers.

                You like doing business with Google. Lots of people like doing business with Apple. So what?

                "Nice" isn't a business model. It's hardly even a worthwhile adjective.

                • by bhagwad (1426855)

                  You like doing business with Google. Lots of people like doing business with Apple. So what?

                  Apple can get even more customers by being nice. Being nice never drove anyone away. But by doing stuff like this, launching frivolous patent wars etc, Apple fails the "nice" test. So it loses a chance to get even more customers. So simple no?

                  • Apple can get even more customers by being nice. Being nice never drove anyone away. But by doing stuff like this, launching frivolous patent wars etc, Apple fails the "nice" test. So it loses a chance to get even more customers.

                    Not really no. The only people that are aware whats in the EULA for a development tool is few geeks on Slashdot and the like. The only people that object to it are people who hate Apple whatever they do. And they won't buy Apple anyway. So they're not lost customers.

                    • by Kartu (1490911)
                      It sure takes a geek to realize you are stuck with bloody itunes when putting stuff on your idevice. I have a spare wi-fi HDD for you, oh enlightened one.
                • by Kartu (1490911)
                  Let me see, being couple of years late and despite endless FUD about malware (for instance dolphin browser sending info about sites you visit to "some server" affected both iOS and Android, but was reported as an android problem by most sites), Android has triple market share of iOS and we'll soon see the same story on tablet market, so what eh?
              • by beelsebob (529313) on Saturday February 04, 2012 @04:50AM (#38925253)

                Apple: Give you free tool because they want content for their store.
                Google: Give you free tool because they want your personal details and information on everything you're doing.

                You may prefer the terms of the latter free tool, but that doesn't make them being "nice", it makes them another company, with another motive for giving you a free tool.

              • And Google's actions concerning trampling privacy and dealing with totalitarian government censorship demands are part of their nice "totality", yes?

                Please, you just don't like Apple.
              • Sorry, a person is nice by their actions in totality. I like doing business with Google and I trust Google because they're nice. So "nice" IS a viable business model if it gains the trust of your customers.

                Google is "nice"? Because they give you shiny things for free and then give the information gathered from them to their paying customers?

                And that's not even going into the illegal data collection, the lying about it right before getting caught, the unethical behaviour against small businesses in Kenya, the censoring here and the illegal adds there, the vandalisation of OpenStreetMap etc.

                But hey, you like doing "business" with them, so you probably like exactly that about them.

        • There is decent business sense in that as well. If they create the best eBook authoring tool, they have the best store, and best readers, they would be making money all around. That others might make money is inconsequential. They have magical products end to end, so it still provides them a lot of income, possibly more since it could make iBooks author the de facto standard. Of course, that would rely on them actually having and continuing to have the best end to end.

          That's pretty much the entire id
          • There is decent business sense in that as well. If they create the best eBook authoring tool, they have the best store, and best readers, they would be making money all around.

            How would that money be increased by letting other ebook stores benefit from their app?

            They have magical products end to end, so it still provides them a lot of income, possibly more since it could make iBooks author the de facto standard.

            To turn that into a profit would require charging for iBooks Author. And iBook tools is such a small niche, income from selling it would be irrelevant compared to actually selling ebooks.

            Of course, that would rely on them actually having and continuing to have the best end to end.

            They do have the best because they left the old standard behind.

            That's pretty much the entire idea behind open standards, and ibooks is at least partially based on such a standard.

            The point of open standards is it benefits those who need easy compatibility between systems of different organisations. Having made the best authoring tool, and having their

            • How would that money be increased by letting other ebook stores benefit from their app?

              To turn that into a profit would require charging for iBooks Author. And iBook tools is such a small niche, income from selling it would be irrelevant compared to actually selling ebooks.

              They would profit because could mean that practically ALL of the authors use the iBooks author app and put their books in the iBooks store. That ensures the further sale of iPads and use of the iBooks store. Their decision to be cunts

              • by beelsebob (529313)

                They would profit because could mean that practically ALL of the authors use the iBooks author app and put their books in the iBooks store. That ensures the further sale of iPads and use of the iBooks store. Their decision to be cunts about this means that authors that want to be in all stores will have to use other tools. If Adobe is feeling petty, they might release a similar, standards compliant tool, and make Apple and Jobs out to be hypocrites regarding open standards.

                That will happen anyway, why do they gain?

                • It won't, because many authors want to sell to non-Apple readers. Now, they may maintain a large market share for authoring tools, but their current stance assures that they will alienate a significant amount of authors.
                  • "It won't, because many authors want to sell to non-Apple readers."

                    And not one damned thing prevents that.

                    "... but their current stance assures that they will alienate a significant amount of authors."

                    No it won't. Why would it? It's a tool you don't have to use. What's the put-off?
                    • And not one damned thing prevents that.

                      They are prevented from selling to non-Apple readers in a fully functional format without having to remake the eBook.

                      No it won't. Why would it? It's a tool you don't have to use. What's the put-off?

                      Exactly, they don't have to use it. By authors who want to sell to everyone choosing to not use it, iBooks author doesn't become the de facto standard it could have been.

        • by Grishnakh (216268)

          Simple: because making the tool free and pushing it to become the de-facto standard means more people will use the Apple book store (or whatever they're calling it), and they'll make more money on ebook sales. Keeping all locked up will make people (esp. authors) just go to Kindle instead.

          Making it harder or more expensive for your customers to do business with you is almost always a losing strategy.

          • Simple: because making the tool free and pushing it to become the de-facto standard means more people will use the Apple book store (or whatever they're calling it), and they'll make more money on ebook sales.

            There's nothing simple about that at all. That seems to be nothing more than an item of faith on your part. The logic seems entirely the other way.

      • It's still ridiculous. Imagine if the EULA of an IDE like Eclipse were to demand that any programs compiled using it have to give a cut to the creators of Eclipse!

        Metrowerks Codewarrior, in its time the leading IDE for Mac software development. There was a commercial edition, and a student edition. Student edition was free (as in free beer), with the restriction that no commercial use was allowed. FAQ: "What if I created software with the free version and someone wants to buy it? " Answer: "Buy the commercial edition and compile the code again". Are you saying Metrowerks were jerks? Thousands of students will strongly disagree with you.

        • by Grishnakh (216268)

          There's a big difference between demanding a cut of all the sales of a program, and charging a flat fee for a tool.

          • by beelsebob (529313)

            Yes – permitting you to make money as long as you give a cut is more permissive than not permitting you to make money at all. Apple's licensing terms are even more friendly than some very common ones out there, great! \o/

      • by Lumpy (12016)

        You mean like the Microsoft IDE?

        Go ahead and read that things EULA, Oh and you cant write anything that is anti microsoft with MS word. That is in their EULA for Office.

    • It means: We don't own the message. We own the medium.

      Imagine if Microsoft said "We don't own the content of your document, but if we find any of your *.docx files being offered anywhere other than approved Microsoft partner's shop, we will sue you into the ground."

      Somehow we're not supposed to still be outraged over this?

      • Re: (Score:1, Flamebait)

        Why would you be outraged? Why would you even care? If you don't like it, just don't use iBooks Author.

        The sense of entitlement in tech communities is what's actually outrageous.

        • by migla (1099771)

          Unless, of course, one values Freedom(tm) or Openness(tm) or TheRightThingToDo(tm).

        • by Abreu (173023)

          Why would you be outraged? Why would you even care? If you don't like it, just don't use iBooks Author.

          The sense of entitlement in tech communities is what's actually outrageous.

          Exactly. I won't use it. And I will discourage all of my friends from using it.

          There. Any other questions?

          • by beelsebob (529313)

            Why? Are you sure they don't like it? Why would you discourage them from using it, rather than informing them of when it's a good idea to use it and when it's not?

      • by BasilBrush (643681) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:42PM (#38922863)

        Imagine if Microsoft said "We don't own the content of your document, but if we find any of your *.docx files being offered anywhere other than approved Microsoft partner's shop, we will sue you into the ground."

        Microsoft charges for Word. A general purpose word processing program. They sell it for all the things that WPs are expected to do. Create word processor files, print then and/or share them freely. If they didn't, no one would buy it.

        Apple doesn't charge for iBooks Author. It's a specific tool for preparing eBooks for the iBooks store from source content files. It could have been implemented as a web-app on the author section of their iBooks Store. But a native app means they can make it better and give it more features.

        You can imagine anything you like, but the two are not equivalent.

      • by gnasher719 (869701) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:49PM (#38922929)

        Somehow we're not supposed to still be outraged over this?

        I'll compare two products: iBooks Author and Microsoft Office, Home Edition.

        iBooks Author: It is free. The restriction is that documents in the native iBook format, created with iBooks Author, may not be sold for money except through Apple. Microsoft Office, Home Edition: It costs real money. The restriction is that no commercial use of the software is allowed.

        Let's compare the licenses: iBooks Author is free, and it disallows one specific commercial use of the software: Selling documents in iBook format, created with iBooks Author, without going through Apple. Many other commercial uses are allowed, and so are all non-commercial uses. Microsoft Office, Home Edition: The software costs money, and it disallows _all_ commercial use of the software. So it is more expensive, and more restrictive.

        Where were the complaints about Microsoft Office, Home Edition?

      • Imagine if Microsoft said "here's a cheap student version of visual studio. But if you want to develop commercial applications with it, you need to buy the more expensive version." You don't have to imagine since they used to do that.

        Ok, imagine if the FSF said "here's a FREE yacc replacement. We call it bison. Oh yeah, but if you use it, your output will be GPL". You don't have to imagine since they used to do that.

        Ok, let's imagine Microsoft did as you said. Well, I wouldn't use .docx files. S

  • by whisper_jeff (680366) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:12PM (#38922577)
    I still find it absolutely mind-boggling that anyone thought Apple was claiming rights to the content...
    • by migla (1099771)

      they just threw that out there to see if it could have had any chance to stick. If it would'a, then they'd turned around one day an said: "Haha! We own all the words now, so you must all shut the fuck up!"

  • Wow (Score:3, Informative)

    by MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:15PM (#38922609)

    Apple has modified it in a software update to make clear that Apple is claiming rights to the .ibook format itself and not the content therein:

    Bet the ball on this got rolling just after somebody in Cupertino read the knee-jerk comments on Slashdot.

  • Worth noting (Score:5, Informative)

    by Superken7 (893292) on Friday February 03, 2012 @08:22PM (#38922671) Journal

    It is worth noting that you can't export to standard EPUB3 file format, only to PDF. PDF is obviously non-interactive, while the EPUB3 standard would allow for most if not all of the interactive elements that can be created with iBooks Author.

    Many argue that they are in their right to put that EULA, and that others have done it before (Microsoft's Word, for example). And they are absolutely right.
    That does not mean, however, that this isn't a very greedy move - many even describe it as 'evil' - and just like it happened with Microsoft in the past, I can totally understand why.

    Having a right to do something is not incompatible with being greedy or even evil.

    A peek into .iba files and a comparison with epub files evidences that Apple deliberately re-designed and implemented features in order to make the ibooks file format incompatible with industry standards. Again, while they are fully in their right to do this, this should be worrying to anyone who appreciates healthy competition and doesn't enjoy Microsoft-like monopolies. Ironically, this has happened with Apple being a member of the International Digital Publishing Forum, who manage the EPUB standard.
    (This really smells like embrace-extend-extinguish to me.)

    Perhaps what bugs me the most is that in spite of all this, no-one (AFAIK) has taken the time to provide an alternative tool which allows to create interactive ePub documents just as easily. It seems to me that Apple was first to do this "properly" (as it usually happens), and in this case there is no technical reason why it could not have been created 1 or 2 years ago by other industry leaders - I have used iBooks Author and it isn't much more than a glorified presentation editor.

    • by Nerdfest (867930)

      It's similar to what they did with FaceTime, isn't it? For that one I'm under the impression they extended XMPP. At least they didn't claim they were going to make it an open standard this time and then advertise heavily that it's only between Apple devices.

      • Facetime voice/video chat at least, is regular SIP (using H.264 codecs) connecting through a central server that allows you to look up SIP URIs from phone numbers or email addresses. It's not regular SIP like Ekiga though, it first does a lookup using HTTPS (from user name or email) which then returns the SIP peer name to be dialed, from that point it is then a regular SIP call. It should be possible to implement an open Facetime client though, codecs aside.

    • How is it greedy or evil if the authoring tool is "free" and that you are not required to sell the book for a price? The tool is offered "FREE" with certain terms and conditions and if you don't like it then don't use it.

      I get the distinct impression that you have never written software for money because addition features like exporting to other formats costs money to develop and to test and maintain that code over time.

      • by arose (644256)
        He explained exactly how this is designed to combat competition. It's only "free" inasmuch as it promotes iPad sales, it's not available for any other purpose.
    • by siddesu (698447)

      It is a good business model -- on one end, they act as if they own the hardware they sell you by restricting the ways third parties can deliver their information goods and services to your apple-branded hardware; on the other end, they are getting a commission from the third parties who want to deliver content to you for the privilege.

      It is profits all the way, eating at both the consumer and producer surplus ;)

    • by frinkster (149158)

      A peek into .iba files and a comparison with epub files evidences that Apple deliberately re-designed and implemented features in order to make the ibooks file format incompatible with industry standards.

      It's pretty amazing that someone can come to this conclusion based on a comparison of the output files. Really?

      The iPad 2 has outstanding graphics performance compared to other tablets despite the graphics chip having similar or less processing power. They control both the hardware and software, allowing them to optimize the hell out of it.

      In this case, Apple controls the file format, the display software, AND the display hardware. And your conclusion is that Apple deliberately redesigned and implemented

    • Re:Worth noting (Score:5, Informative)

      by Sneeka2 (782894) on Friday February 03, 2012 @11:22PM (#38923903)

      A peek into .iba files and a comparison with epub files evidences that Apple deliberately re-designed and implemented features in order to make the ibooks file format incompatible with industry standards.

      Please point to any material released by Apple that advertises in any way that .ibook files are epub files in any way, shape or form. I'll wait.

      Apple does not claim to be compatible with anything. This isn't a bait and switch. It's Apple releasing a proprietary tool for you to author a proprietary file format to be sold on a proprietary distribution platform to be consumed on proprietary devices. Nobody ever claimed otherwise. To the contrary, the EULA explicitly says so. What's there to complain about?

      Oh, you were hoping for a selfless deed of good and Apple to release a great, free authoring tool for the epub format that would make the world a better place and cure cancer. I guess you were also hoping for the iPhone 5 instead of the 4S. Sorry to disappoint.

      • by Superken7 (893292)

        When did I say that they somehow were falsely advertising or tricking customers into thinking those were actually ePub files? I didn't.
        They did, however, decide to base their file format *very heavily* on ePub3, and change it in a way that will make it incompatible, without submitting their changes to the International Digital Publishing Forum (who maintain the ePub file format on which the ibooks file format is heavily based).

        Yes, actually, I would expect from a big company such as Apple who is a member of

        • by Sneeka2 (782894)

          They did, however, decide to base their file format *very heavily* on ePub3, and change it in a way that will make it incompatible, without submitting their changes to the International Digital Publishing Forum (who maintain the ePub file format on which the ibooks file format is heavily based).

          Which is exactly where I say: So What? If you didn't look at the innards of the format, you'd never know it was based on ePub. What if they'd based it on an entirely different format, on something that was entirely proprietary to begin with? Would this make any difference? ePub by itself didn't do what they wanted it to do, so they modified it to their needs. To me that's the same as developing a proprietary format, period. Unless that is against the terms of use of the ePub format, they're entirely in thei

    • by ceoyoyo (59147)

      The iBooks format isn't encrypted. They didn't even make a pretense of protecting the contents. It's more likely they extended epub3 because they wanted some extra features. I'm sure calibre will have a converter for you in no time.

  • It's still equivalent to saying that if I make a PDF with Adobe Acrobat that I can only distribute it through Adobe's services. Or that I write a Word DOC that can only be hosted on a Microsoft service.

    Proprietary formats already have deeply annoying lock-in, this is taking it one step too far.

    • is legally restricted to not be used for commercial purposes--in nearly exactly the same way that iBook Author is. I assume you are going to start protesting that now?

      • by Qubit (100461)

        is legally restricted to not be used for commercial purposes--in nearly exactly the same way that iBook Author is. I assume you are going to start protesting that now?

        That's actually a very interesting question! I assume that the restrictions on the "Home edition" software (let's shorten it to "HE") is on the software, not the resultant files. These kinds of restrictions (you might see one from your ISP or your phone company somewhere in their litterature) are often just to restrict people from using the software, the service, or the physical object (e.g. a hand mixer or a stove) in a commercial setting.

        The general idea with most of these restrictions is that the given

        • That's actually a very interesting question! I assume that the restrictions on the "Home edition" software (let's shorten it to "HE") is on the software, not the resultant files. These kinds of restrictions (you might see one from your ISP or your phone company somewhere in their litterature) are often just to restrict people from using the software, the service, or the physical object (e.g. a hand mixer or a stove) in a commercial setting.

          Well, if you use any software to write a book that you then sell, then it is commercial use. Very arguably using the software to write a book that you intend to sell is commercial use, even if you then fail to sell it. You are insofar right that the restriction is not on the output, but you fell foul of the EULA restriction much earlier. That doesn't change the fact that writing a book and selling it, taken together, is against the EULA.

    • by Sneeka2 (782894)

      It's equivalent to saying that if you want to sell an iBook on the Apple iBook store to be consumed on Apple iDevices, you may use this tool. That's the purpose of this file format and authoring tool. The purpose is not to create a new interoperable format. It's equivalent to saying that if you want to program a widget for the HyperFridge 3000, you have to learn and write it in VisiFoo++ 3.4 and compile it to ProprietyARMBinaryCode 25E, which will only run on HyperFridge compatible devices. The EULA is limi

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