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Digital Book Expert Clarifies Digtal Formats

PRS-300P1_med.JPGEarlier today, GalleyCat noted that Sony unveiled a new plan to adopt the ePub format for all digital books on the reader. According to the New York Times, Sony will convert all files to the ePub format by the end of the year, allowing users to share books on a host of other devices, including Plastic Logic reader and the iPhone Stanza e-reader.

Nevertheless, digital book expert David Rothman worried in an essay that the new format will not be completely “open,” nor free of digital rights management [DRM]. Rothman has been promoting open formats for years, co-founding the OpenReader Consortium, a movement which attempted “to finally develop and promote a true consumer ebook standard.”

Here’s more speculation about the format, from TeleRead: “The article failed to play up up an essential–namely that Adobe-DRMed ePub is in effect a proprietary format. Only nonDRMed ePub isn’t proprietary. Adobe controls the DRM-related technology used by the Sony store and others, and in the future it could raise or lower prices or refuse to do business with certain companies.” (Image via)

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