Best. DRM. Evar!



Rails Book non-DRM

Okay, I lied. The best DRM isn’t DRM at all. I’m not a huge fan of DRM because it always seems to get in the way when you’re trying to use something that you’ve bought in a way that you think is appropriate. No, the best DRM in the world just makes sure you don’t redistribute the stuff you’ve bought, or makes sure you can get in trouble if you do.

The above screenshot is from the PDF version of the upcoming Agile Web Development with Rails book. They have these PDF-aware gerbils at The Pragmatic Programmer that generate (and regenerate upon request when a new version is out) PDFs on the fly, with your name on the bottom of each page.

Having your name plastered all over the place is one sure way to discourage sharing it with friends or on file sharing networks. Imagine what would happen if the publisher found out htat you’re the guy responsible for the book ending up on BitTorrent?

Granted, this method isn’t foolproof, and I’m sure that if you really wanted to you could figure out a way to remove your name from the PDF. The exact same thing can be said for the vast majority of DRM out there though, if you really want to get around it. I’m very glad that I can just use the stuff I paid for without having to deal with DRM silliness.

My hat is off to the publisher and authors of this awesome book for “getting it.” In related news, the book rocks. It’s definitely worth having if you’re using or thinking about using Rails.


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