There are plently of sites that offer "instant free downloads" without having all the troubles of signin up or even paying for ebooks that other sites offer free. I regulary download ebooks from freeebooks.com as there is no sign up to download, you just find what you like, download and start reading. If you are going to sign up its over for social reasons. Check it out.
A signifncant number of the ebooks I saw are from Project Gutenberg, and are
in the public domain. Project Gutenberg doesn't require you to sign up to
download. However, this site may be easier for you to use than Project
Gutenberg's, because it has jacket covers, and descriptions of the
contents. This site also has ebooks that were created specifically for
distribution to ereaders, plus some - just some - novels by known authors.
You can download free books as others have said, or through either the Sony bookstore, google books, or perhaps though Kobobooks or Barnes & Noble.
But the odd thing about ADE and free ebooks is that sometimes ADE seems to make the books become unfree.
I downloaded a Sherlock Holmes volume that was free, i.e., in public domain. I could read it just fine on my computer. But when
it got to my Sony ereader, Adobe gave me the "no permission" error.
Wait, wait, don't tell me! 1) Ebook technology is "still evolving" and Adobe Digital Rights Management is so awesome that my disappearing book is somehow a feature! 2) It was a "user error." 3) I merely need to deinstall Adobe Digital Rights Management, (& maybe delete all the books I've purchased), and then reinstall, which should only take about an hour, er, maybe two, tops.
So, I won't tell you all of that, because none of it will help. Instead,
let me suggest that you look at the digital rights for that book, because
they could be preventing you from copying the ebook to your ereader. I
found that some of the public domain ebooks from certain sources have been
coded with 'no copy allowed'.
You can check this out. With ADE in Library mode, put your cursor on the
book cover or avatar for it. A small arrow will appear at the top. Put
your cursor on the arrow, and a drop-down menu will appear. Go to 'Item
Info' and see what permissions, if any, have been granted or not. My
feeling is that you don't have permission to copy the ebook to your
ereader. If that's the case, then you could delete the ebook and go to
Gutenberg.org. They have public domain ebooks without any copy
restrictions, and that's where I get my Sherlock Holmes downloads.
Hope this helps!
Thanks, but I had already done that. The permissions were set to allow viewing, copying, and printing on any device.
I also usually get free books at Project Gutenburg, but the S. Holmes wasn't one of them.
Perhaps some enterprising Gnu-er will come out with a freeware Digital Rights Management software package that actually works, could be adopted by publishers, and end all this fussing with Adobe DRM.
On the first point, I think I have about seven of Doyle's works from
Gutenberg on my ereaders now. No issues with permissions.
As to the second, this forum is about helping people use ADE as it is, with
some side comments about the problems we're encountering. My opinion and
yours about what ADE should be and how it should work really don't belong
here. That ship sailed long ago enough to be over the horizon. What we
have is the result of over eleven years of work on what DRM 'should' be,
according to Adobe, and publishers have decided that they will use digital
rights to protect their copyrighted material, and they've adopted Adobe's
epub format. The epub format has been implemented differently by different
companies, much the same way as Unix has been. So, all we can do is pick
our poison and drink it, so to speak..... If it gives us indigestion, then
maybe we need to drink something different. [But will we have the same
The free Sherlock Holmes EPUB that Adobe DRM apparently mangled wasn't from Project Gutenburg.
Because this forum is for Adobe Digital Editions, and it is apparently read by Adobe employees who might actually do something about Adobe DRM problems, it's the perfect forum not only to describe problems, but to suggest fixes or redesign.
If Adobe indeed spent eleven years to specify and implement their current DRM, I'd say: back to the drawing board. The EPUB standard essentially specifies a language for formatting books, but leaves a hook for any Digital Rights Management scheme. There is no EPUB requirement that publishers use Adobe's DRM, and ships that now sail need not follow those that have run aground, but can instead set a better course.
So, if the 25,000 or more people who have been to this forum are as fed up with Adobe DRM as many of the comments indicate, I'd suggest they voice their frustrations here, to bookstores, to libraries, to online retailers, to publishers, and even to Adobe. Voicing those comments, here and elsewhere, will spur action, helping all of us avoid the need to come here to solve problems that we probably should not have had to encounter in the first place. But I rather doubt that censoring design comments here will have any beneficial effect.
Bugzy99, I checked last night (I was running out of books to read), and I
'think' all of Doyle's Sherlock Holmes work is available there. Gutenberg's
DRM's are always wide open. I have transferred some free ones that started
with Gutenberg and ended up with manybooks.net with no DRM issues also. I
don't think ADE DRM 'mangled' the digital rights for the Doyle work you
tried to import - more likely, it was the folks who made it available to
you, because all Adobe does is to read the data in that portion of the
Soapbox mode on.
A little background to expand what happend. The DRM framework or objectives
were set up when the industry hashed out the Digital Millenium Copyright Act
of 2000. That occurred in the '90's, and was codified when the DMCA was
implemented in the early '00's. Publishers and others agreed to basic
features to be included in the digital rights for an epublication, and that
included other formats as well as .epub. Adobe was at the table, but didn't
have any more influence than anyone else, and developed the first versions
of ADE accordingly.
Adobe is not linked to a particular source, but must service many sources as
well as many different devices - just look at the supported device list.
They must follow the basic formats for DRM ino order to import epublications
from so may sources. SONY, B&N, Amazon and others coded extensions for
digital rights for their specific devices as a way to implement tight
coupling between a reader and their book source, preserving business.
I don't see lots of the posters to the fourm complaining about the DRM
portion of the software - just run down the list of topics. Postings here
largely identify operational shortcomings of the software and its
interactions with other software and devices, so a user can figure out how
to make it work, so they can attach readers to ADE, and transfer their
ematerials. Oncea digital publication is transferred, the digital rights,
which are transferred with it determine what they can and cannot do, and
that's out of Adobe's hands. If the source has 'mangled' the digital
rights, there's nothing Adobe can - or should - do about it, because the
source has violated the protocol which Adobe has implemented. It's
non-productive here to expound on how you think digital rights should work.
I pointed that out, and you call it 'censorship'. I don't advocate, nor
have I indicated 'censorship' in any way. Do not put words or thoughts in
Perhaps you need to go directly to Adobe through their customer service
link, and explain your better approach to them.
Soapbox mode off.
End of conversation.
As I said previously, the problem I was having was that Adobe had apparently mangled the permissions on a free Sherlock Holmes epub, refusing to let me read the epub although though the permissions on that epub permitted all actions. (Why is Adobe DRM even involved with permissions on a free book?) It was nice that Project Gutenberg had a replacement book, but it didn't resolve the Adobe DRM issue with the other free ebook.
If Adobe claims to support/provide digital rights management DRM on the e-reading devices of a number of vendors, it should do it well, or at least competently. To me, the astoundingly large number of frustrated users here--just scan the forum messages--indicates that Adobe's DRM scheme does not work correctly. That's also been my experience as a user--or, is victim too strong a term?--of Adobe's DRM. (See above, for example.)
Surely Frustrated in AZ jests that he "do[esn't] see lots of posters to the forum complaining about the DRM portion of the software - just run down the list of topics." Although the users may not know their problems are related to DRM, they clearly are. See, for example, "Authorizing my nook" (40,747 views, 214 replies). One has to authorize one's Nook for the Adobe DRM scheme to work. The user eventually solved that problem by deleting some Adobe files/directories. Or, see "Error getting license" (13,308 views, 19 replies). The list of similar DRM-related problems goes on, and on, and on, and on, and on.
Perhaps Frustrated in AZ is right that "[his] opinion and [mine] about what ADE should be and how it should really work don't belong here." That's not, however, as he seems to assert, because this forum is an inappropriate place to make suggestions to Adobe. Rather, it's because given the state of the DRM market, it's probably best for those who have better approaches than Adobe's DRM scheme to hash them out, patent them, and then license them to whichever company or organization will use them to create a better e-reading experience for those of us who want to read instead of wasting hours debugging software.
I'm pretty sure from what you said that you expect me to respond, and I'll
do that one last time.
I agree that it will take some time to establish a better concept of how to
handle publisher's privacy and copyright concerns. That effort should be
ongoing because technology changes all the time.
I agree that there is room for improvement in the overall process of
epublications. It's kind of like the UNIX world in software: the core is
there and everyone uses it, but they all add on or adapt pieces of it to do
the job a bit differently. But there are parts to the whole, and it's
important to make sure that we talk about the right part, and not drag
something into the discussion under a blanket assumption.
But I still disagree with you about how bad the situation is - whether it's
B&N, SONY, Amazon, Adobe or others. For starters, there is no 'DRM market'
because digital rights are not present in all of the material you can
download (see above re: UNIX). Next up, unless you stay in the controlled
environment your source has established, you will have 'some' problems
because of the variation in processes outside of that environment(ditto).
That makes for a very unstable situation - with no clear roadmap on how to
get through it.
The bottom line:
Your digital rights problem with one ebook does not constitute an indictment
of the entire process and does not apply to every other one. It's just one
error that you can get around. It's not appropriate to blame digital rights
for all the rest of the problems that others have - especially on the flawed
assumption that DRM is intertwined with every aspect of using ADE. I'd
guess that the redistributor of the ebook in question got some bad data in
the digital rights and Adobe choked on it. That's not uncommon in software,
but it is damned annoying.
Digital rights applies only in certain situations. Digital rights are
created by publishers and others when they have a reason to do so as set out
in the DMCA. And it can change from source to source. Libraries can
establish digital rights and so can resellers/redistributors. Errors
associated with setting up and interfacing with an ereader don't involve
digital rights - it's a hardware-talking-with-software process.
Adobe's error detection and correction process needs MASSIVE work so that a
user can understand what happened and what to do about it. There's nothing
worse than blaming a part of the process that isn't involved in the error
you're encountering because 'fixing' that 'problem' won't change anything
(such as deleting ADE and reinstalling it when the error is external to
ADE). It could be your anti-virus or firewall or even your browser
ADE itself needs lots of attention to make it more stable and able to
recover from internal problems.
Where will we be a year or two from now?